Providing Methane Digesters to Rural Farming Families in Hainan Province China
When thinking of greenhouse gas pollution, it is easy to overlook the impact of the agricultural sector, despite the fact it contributed to over 10% of global emissions in 2019. A proportion of which derives from methane emissions released during the fermentation of waste organic material.
The provision of methane digesters to rural farming families on the Chinese Island of Hainan drastically reduces their methane emissions. Previously, manure from farm animals was stored in uncovered pits, resulting in methane being emitted during its fermentation. The introduction of methane digesters rather creates controlled anaerobic digestion, with the organic material submerged in a water-filled chamber, causing microorganisms to break down the material and convert it into usable biogas rather than open-air pollution. This stage of the project reduces 8,060 tonnes of methane per year.
This biogas is then used for household heating and cooking, with the level of biogas produced meeting the thermal demand of each household. This reduces the previous widespread use of coal stoves for cooking and heating. Causing a further emissions reduction of 45,620 tonnes per year. With the combined emissions reduction of both aspects of the project being 53,680 tonnes per year.
Beyond its environmental benefit, the project has also provided economic and social advantages for the population of Hainan, including the creation of local jobs through the building, installation, and maintenance of digestors. Additionally, the project’s provision of biogas reduces household expenditure on coal, supporting improved standards of living for rural farming families.
About the project
|Additionality||Without these biogas digestors, methane would be emitted from organic fermentation. Whilst households would also continue using coal for both cooking and heating.|
|Emissions reduction||A total of 53,680 tonnes of CO2e per year will be removed by the project.|
|Contribution to sustainable development (in line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals*)||3 – Good health and well-being, 12 – Responsible Production and Consumption, 13 – Climate Action|
The impacts and benefits of this project:
- Reduces methane emissions from the fermentation of organic waste.
- Decreases the use of coal previously used for heating and cooking.
- Creating local employment and training opportunities in the construction of methane digestors and biogas systems, their installation and wider follow-up maintenance.
- Introduce practical and affordable energy technology for rural families, decreasing household expenditure.
- Reduces indoor pollution from coal burning in open stoves previously used for both heating and cooking, which is a major cause of respiratory issues.
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