Groundbreaking bio-digestor project reduces greenhouse gases and improves lives in Vietnam
Animal waste can produce large amounts of methane, a very potent greenhouse gas. Run off from the manure also can impact water quality in nearby streams and rivers. While dairy methane digesters are a well known solution for large scale operations, a different solution was needed in rural Vietnam, where over 2 million families raise pigs on a small scale.
This project is run by a non-profit organization that uses its funding to establish new digester manufacturing franchises and to train local franchisees on how to build new digester projects. These small-scale digesters capture methane gas from animal waste related to small family animal husbandry in rural Vietnam. Captured gas is used for cooking and lighting in households.
The project has already built 150,000 biogas digesters, with a goal of completing 180,000 by 2018, and has helped 700,000 people in 53 rural Vietnamese provinces.
Environmental and Social Benefits
In areas that lack adequate manure management, biogas technology can help to address hygiene and odor issues and reduce the pollution of waterways. The clean energy produced by a digester can be used to power stoves for cooking, as well as appliances such as lamps and boilers. The generation of biogas also creates a valuable fertilizer by-product that increases farmers’ agricultural yields. Among the project’s co-benefits are:
+ reduced working time for women (searching for fuel) by 1.5-2.0 hours each day
+ increased crop yields by 5-20% due to use of organic fertilizer by-product
+ approximately 64,000 avoided cases of respiratory illness from indoor air pollution
+ new revenue stream for local masons constructing the digesters
The project has received multiple awards including the World Energy Award (2012), the Ashden Award (2010) and the Energy Globe Award (2006). The sale of Gold Standard carbon credits enables the program to train more people in digester construction and maintenance, thus reaching additional farm families.
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