Domestic biodigesters provide a way for households with livestock to reduce their dependence on polluting firewood and expensive fossil fuels. Cooking on biogas is fast and smokeless, improving family health, especially among women and children. Leftover slurry from the biogas process is an excellent organic fertilizer that improves crop yields – and having more vegetables to sell, provides families with extra income.
The Kenya Biogas Programme provides biodigesters to individual households. The programme was founded by the Africa Biogas Partnership Programme (ABPP), a partnership between the Dutch government, Hivos and SNV Netherlands Development Organization, in support of national programmes in five African countries including Kenya. The overall objective of ABPP is to develop a commercially viable biogas sector that supports the use of domestic biogas as a local, sustainable energy source.
Since the start of the programme in 2009, over 17,000 biodigesters have been built across Kenya; early 2020 88% of them were in operation and use. Entrepreneurship is encouraged and, to date, nearly 100 masons have started their own business entities, helping to build the local economy.
A barrier for some families is the cost to apply the biogas technology, the programme has therefore initiated credit partnerships with financial institutions. Working together with rural micro finance institutions and saving cooperatives, it ensures that biodigester buyers get the most favourable credit terms. Income from carbon credit sales benefits directly biogas users in forms of after-sales support, bioslurry training and other useful services.
Project impacts and benefits
- 14,950 smoke-free kitchens
- 103,440 direct beneficiaries
- 365,200 tCO2 reduced
- 223,000 ton of wood saved
- 13,700 productive slurry users
- 31 private enterprises
- 107 full time jobs plus part-time unskilled day labour