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County installs First Biogas Plant

Kisumu County has completed its first pilot project of constructing a bio digester at the Ahero Vocational Training Centre in Nyando Sub-County to promote the use of biogas technology and access to clean energy in a drive to combat climate change.

The project, through funding from the European Union, aims to demonstrate that biogas technology offers safe and environmentally friendly ways of waste disposal and recovery, hence, creating a climate-sensitive environment.

The bio digester converts animal waste into high-quality fertilizer used for agricultural production and clean and renewable gas for cooking, lighting, and running small farms equipment.

Water, Environment, Natural Resources, and Climate Change, CEC Salmon Orimba, during the commissioning of the plant, expressed optimism in the success of the pilot project saying it would steer his department to replicate the initiative to all other Vocational Training Centres in the region.

Over 80 percent of households in the lakeside city are still highly dependent on unclean sources of energy for cooking, such as firewood, charcoal, and paraffin. 

The biogas technology will be a game-changer in the region as it provides invaluable benefits to communities and the environment.

The dome model bio-digester has a capacity of 10 cubic meters and it generates up to 3 cubic meters of gas daily to supplement the cooking energy needs of the learning institution.

The bio-slurry (exhausted dung) is used in the school farm by Agri-business students for their practical training on various applications to boost their skills and increase farm productivity. 

The plant also offers a demonstration platform for the 700 students enrolled at the vocational centre. “The students, tutors, parents, and the entire community are expected to continue learning the technology and spread it to the villages where a majority of Kisumu residents experience challenges in accessing clean energy.

 

This will greatly increase its adoption and boost the share of the renewable energy mix in the county,” said Orimba.

Students pursuing masonry and plumbing course also participated in its construction and this was a strategy designed by the project implementation team to build their technical capacities and know-how for sustainability and future installations.

In addition, the county has organized training for biogas technicians and awareness sessions to promote biogas technologies and the benefits that this solution can bring to the city and its residents.

The programme was also hugely supported by the Covenant of Mayors for Sub-Saharan Africa – a trusted partner in climate resilience support and impact management to reduce the impact of climate change.

 

By Robert Ojwang’

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