21 April 2008

GTZ: 2.000 small-scale biogas digesters for Kenya?

A project to implement 2,000 biogas digesters in Kenya using the CDM ‘Programme of Activities’ (PoA) framework is posed to achieve important development goals such as increasing the access to clean cooking energy, improving health conditions and reducing the use of non-renewable biomass. On behalf of the BMZ, the GTZ is conducting a feasibility study for this project, which will focus on biogas technology for small farmers who have 5 to 10 cattle that are kept in stalls.

Conditions in diverse regions of Kenya are suitable for biogas utilisation, according to the study authors, and even households with just two or more cattle could benefit from a biogas digester. The main barrier to biogas is the high up-front investment, so to make 2,000 biogas digesters possible, local technicians have to be trained, support networks and institution need to be built up, and favorable business conditions need to be established before farmers can afford the investment for a biogas digester.

There is an urgent need to develop alternative sources of energy in Kenya and other countries in the region because the uncontrolled harvest of fuelwood is contributing to deforestation and also results in an unhealthy dependence on a dwindling energy source. Cookfires are also associated with health problems and gender discrimination due to the high labor costs of fuelwood gathering. The GTZ will support national institutions in paPoA CDM project viable.

Source: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH, Newsletter vom 2008-04-08.

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