Cooking with gas from cow dung

Our Carbon offset project in Bagepalli, India

Small biogas plants, Bagepalli, India

In many rural households in India, cooking is done over simple open fireplaces in the home. This requires a lot of wood and causes toxic smoke. Respiratory and eye infections are very common, especially among women and children.

This project promotes small biogas plants for private households. They produce biogas from cow dung and certain organic household waste. This allows families to cook without any worries. There is no smoke any more, and the tedious chore of collecting wood is also dispensed with. Many women and children were busy collecting firewood one day a week; now they have more time to work and play. On top of that, because they are saving the forests and reducing carbon emissions by not burning any more wood, the project can finance itself through climate protection. The families have to get involved themselves when the system is installed. Eighteen thousand such plants have already been built, each with a capacity of 2 m3.

TÜV NORD CERT GmbH
Verification
UNFCCC, GS
Certificate type
26,000
Annual volume (tons CO2)

Contribution to the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs)

Reduction of health risks due to improved indoor air quality, and healthier diet.

Capacity building for use, technology transfer for construction of systems.

Empowerment, improved social and economic status for women.

Families save wood and protect the local forests as a carbon sink; they also avoid methane emissions.

Healthier soils by using residues from biogas production as natural fertilizers; protection of local biodiversity.

How do biogas projects help fight global warming?

In biogas facilities, biomass ferments into biogas in sealed digesters. Biomass may consist of organic waste or dung from cows or other animals. In countries such as India and Vietnam, families use gas generated from small biogas facilities for cooking, thereby avoiding the use of wood or charcoal. 
Additional greenhouse gas reduction is achieved from the fact that the biomass used does not rot in the open air, which would release methane (CH4).