The National Bioenergy Investment Model (NBIM) Version 0.6 Beta

NBIM is a scenario model that simulates decision-making by domestic and foreign investors whether to invest in biofuel projects in a developing country. The model is useful for rapidly exploring the implications of broad types of policies by seeing how they perform in a simulation. It cannot be used to evaluate specific policies or to make projections, but it can be used to gain insight. NBIM is a dynamic model that features "boom and bust" investment cycles. For this reason, you might see investment peaking and then falling. Also, you might see some land that was converted to biofuel feedstocks being idled as feedstock prices fall too low.

NBIM is open-source and free. Download instructions are given below. It is written in the modeling system Vensim DSS, and requires the (free) Vensim runtime to run.

If you have questions, you can contact the model developer, Eric Kemp-Benedict.

NBIM control screen

Version 0.6 beta

The current version of NBIM is at a "beta" stage. As beta software, it may not perform as intended. Please note:

A word of caution

Under the terms of the license (see below), neither SEI nor CIFOR has any responsibility for the way in which you use the NBIM model. However, we offer some guidance on proper use.

NBIM is a scenario simulation model. Its purpose is to provide insight during a policy engagement and is best used as part of a structured scenario process. More specifically,

Copyright notice

© 2009-2012 Stockholm Environment Institute and the Center for International Forestry Research

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License.

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions andlimitations under the License.


Note: You must have a working copy of Excel on your system, and a way to open .zip files. To be able to switch between country data sets you must be able to run Excel macros and you must have the Excel Solver installed.

Running NBIM

To run NBIM, follow these steps:

Once you have used the model in its basic mode, try exploring different options. Also, consider changing the data in the Excel file. (After changing the data, delete the "Baseline.vdf" file so that NBIM will rerun the baseline with your changes.) If you have any difficulties or questions, please send an e-mail to Eric Kemp-Benedict.