Case for biogas

More and more Nepalis are opting for biogas, both in the urban and rural areas. According to Biogas Sector Partnership-Nepal, an NGO, there are 157,675 household biogas plants in the country, 2,132 of them inside Kathmandu Valley alone. Likewise, there are 50 big institutional plants across Nepal, 11 in Kathmandu. Collectively, these plants help save 375,000 tones of firewood and 800,000 litres of kerosene every year.

Biogas can easily be extracted from human night soil and kitchen wastes. For the capital city, this means that large-scale production of biogas could help manage the Valley’s perennial waste problem as a huge portion of waste consists of degradable material that could be utilised to extract biogas. Countrywide popularity of this technology would make the country self-sufficient in cooking fuel. There will be less deforestation and smoke-related health problems, especially among rural women, would be reduced dramatically.

Hence there is every reason to encourage more people to install biogas plants in their homes and communities. Considering the huge benefits, it is indeed surprising that most people have not already done so. One can only assume that the majority of them are still ignorant of the benefits of using biogas over traditional fuels. The government ought to do more to popularise this clean, affordable and energy-efficient fuel.