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Biogas and biomethane deserve particular attention and support among renewable energy sources as these low-carbon technologies promote closed loop waste-energy systems. The industry can significantly contribute to further development of rural areas. The use of biogas in stationary engines for various agricultural operations (milling, grinding, powering water pumps and chaff cutters, etc.) also shows that it has the capacity to be a profitable business that can generate ample opportunities for employment in rural areas. Given the potential of biogas in off-grid, rural areas to meet household energy requirements and, to a small extent, rural industry requirements, the future prospects of biogas remain high. Global trends such as the increased rural to urban migration are limiting the potential of biogas in off-grid, rural areas. Increasingly, farmers are depending more on farm mechanization which is leading to a lower number of cows. This chapter presents various case studies from India, Nepal, Vietnam, Cambodia and Rwanda that illustrate the prospects for the medium and long term of the biogas industry in the agriculture sector.
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In Kenya for example, ISO standards developed through the Association of Biogas Contractors (ABC-K) and the Kenya National Domestic Biogas Program (KENDBIP) do not have regulations for bottling biogas nor for feeding scrubbed (purified) biogas/biomethane into the national gas grid.
For further information see: http://www.ireda.gov.in/ and Renewable Energy and Green Growth in India: http://www.teriin.org/projects/green/pdf/National-RE.pdf.
BSP is currently managed by the Ministry of Population and Environment (previously managed by the Ministry of Science and Technology) and provides subsidy support to promote cooking and lighting using biogas.
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is a specialized United Nations agency dedicated to eradicating poverty and hunger in rural areas of developing countries. IFAD’s Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Program (ASAP) is a climate finance window, created to support smallholder farmers cope with increasing climate change related effects. More information here: https://www.ifad.org/topic/asap/overview.
For more information on the Africa Biogas Partnership Program see here: http://www.africabiogas.org/#.
Another impressive program in India is the Sulabh International movement. More than 200 biogas plants of 35–60 m 3 capacity have been constructed by Sulabh in different states of the country so far which are connected to human latrines (Pathak 2013).
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- Current State and Future Prospects of Global Biogas Industry
- Chapter 18