Overview - Potentials of Biogas
Cattle dung available from 22 million cows and buffaloes is nearly 0.22 million tons. One ton of dung can produce 37 m3 of biogas. Available cattle dung can produce 2.97 x 109 m3 of gas which is equivalent to 1.52 x 106 tons of kerosene or 3.04 x 106 tons of coal.
Besides, a substantial amount of biogas can be produced from human and other animal excreta, garbage and water hyacinth.
The first biogas plant (floating dome type) was constructed in 1972. Till now (1997) there have completed around 6000 biogas plants in Bangladesh. The Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) aims setting up 10,000 digesters over the next three years.
In Bangladesh biogas is a proven technology. The plants constructed under Slum Improvement Project (SIP), could show a very encouraging result. This technology now deserves attention to the Government. It is suggested to create a biogas cell, that will monitor the biogas activities. Field level staffs of these departments will be trained on biogas technology. All commercial Banks will ensure loan for the construction of biogas plants. On recommendation and assurance of supervision by the biogas cell. Some private organisations also may be encouraged to make up the responsibility. In order to extend biogas program, it is suggested that based on field information biogas cell is to supply design. The work must be supervised by some trained engineer, who will be responsible for any default.
Involvement of Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) in Biogas Technology
The Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) has been created mainly to provide technical support to the local government institutions. This organization can play an important role in desseminating appropriate technology all over the country as it has setup at Thana level.
First biogas plant based on night soil was constructed by LGED in Faridpur Muslim Mission. Before construction of this plant, there was an apprehension about its acceptability. But after completion of the plant there was no social and cultural barrier. This plant could drew attention of all concerned.
Small bore sewerage system, in conjunction with biogas plant installed by LGED in Bauniabad slum in Dhaka proved to be cheaper and better solution for sewage disposal. Solid waste and water hyacinth based biogas digesters of LGED also ceated great interest among users.
LGED has trained a lot of professional engineers on biogas technology, some of them received higher training in China.