Buchanan Renewables

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"Buchanan Renewables (BR) is a renewable resources and energy company producing biomass from unproductive rubber trees in Liberia - helping to rejuvenate one of its most important industries while producing a renewable source of power. " [1] They make biofuel from old non-productive rubber trees.

"Among the owners of Buchanan Renewables Fuel are Swedish-based energy company Vattenfall and the Swedish government-owned development finance institution Swedfund. The main shareholder is John McCall MacBain Foundation, who is supporting Liberia’s rebuilding efforts in a number of fields, along them environment, health care and education." [1]

Buchanan Renewables (BR) "was one of the first major foreign investors in Liberia after the war." In March 2013 it was noted that "The recently sold Buchanan Renewables has shipped out nearly all of its equipment through the Buchanan port, employees said. The company recently announced its entire ownership interest in its Liberian operations was sold to an unidentified investor group." [2]

"Although BR Fuel has increased its production over the past three years, studies supported by the European Climate Foundation indicate that demand remains more than sufficient for the company to continue to serve that market." [2]

"The BR group is affiliated with the McCall MacBain Foundation and has a strong social development focus and is committed to helping build Liberia’s emerging economy.

"Awarded Business Excellence Award for Natural Resources Development by the Corporate Council on Africa in 2009

"Time magazine recognized the company’s achievements in an extended article in its July 2009 issue...

"Nearly US$100 million invested in Liberia since May 1, 2007 inception...

"Vattenfall and Swedfund share ownership of Buchanan Fuel as of June 2010.." [3]


"In 2011, SOMO and Green Advocates published a research report on the impacts of Buchanan Renewables on sustainable development in Liberia. The report, entitled ‘Burning Rubber: Buchanan Renewables’ impact on sustainable development in Liberia’, aimed to provide insight in the impacts of the business activities of Buchanan Renewables (BR), a com pany producing biomass from old rubber trees, on a range of different stakeholders in Liberia. The report also examined to what extent the company’s practices reflected its corporate image as a sustainable and socially responsible venture. Among other find ings, the report found that a number of smallholder farmers who had engaged with BR were facing difficulties sustaining their livelihoods, that BR’s removal of old rubber trees from Firestone’s large rubber plantation had increased the hardships for local charcoal producers, and that BR’s corporate structure was perfectly suited for tax avoidance purposes. The present report is an update of ‘Burning Rubber’ and addresses the developments that have taken place since November 2011. In particular, this report looks at the decision by Vattenfall and Swedfund, two Swedish minority shareholders of the company, to divest from BR in May 2012...

"n early January 2013, Buchanan Renewables B.V. sent out a short press release announcing the sale of the company to an unname d investor group. 9 The sale included both the assets of the fuel business (BR Fuel) as well as the plans to construct the biomass - fuelled power plant (BR Power).

"According to filings at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce, the new owner of Buchanan Renewables B.V. is Gulf Renewable Energy N.V., an entity registered in the island of Curaçao...

"Buchanan Renewables (Guernsey) Ltd. is managed by the trust company Trident Trust. 113 As BR has no economic substance on the island of Guernsey, its presence in the country might again point to tax avoi dance strategies." [4]


Web: http://www.buchananrenewables.com/

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch


  1. Buchanan Renewables Home, organizational web page, accessed March 30, 2013.
  2. frontpageafricaonline Once Promising Buchanan Renewables Ships Out of Liberia, With Wood Chips, Lost Cause, organizational web page, accessed April 4, 2013.
  3. swedfund 2010 Presentation, organizational web page, accessed April 7, 2013.