Building a Small Scale Anaerobic Digester in Quelimane
Abstract: Anaerobic digestion is a process where biogas is generated from organic substance in the absence of oxygen. The most common application of the anaerobic digestion technology in developing countries is small-scale household digesters producing biogas for cooking purposes. These systems are usually fed with cattle dung or organic household waste. The typical small-scale digester models are fixed-dome digester, floating-drum digester and rubber-balloon digester. Biogas systems contribute to self-sustainability of energy production, improve waste management and mitigate deforestation and health problems caused by poor waste management and usage of traditional cooking fuels such as firewood and charcoal. Anaerobic digestion technology is still quite unknown in Mozambique. An initiative to implement this technology in the municipality of Quelimane located in Zambézia province in the central part of the country, was taken in 2015 and background studies were performed during spring 2015 and 2016. As a part of the study resulting in this report, performed in spring 2017, a small-scale biogas digester was installed in Quelimane city. The digester was fed with the initial input of cow manure in order to create population of anaerobic bacteria and in the future it’s planned to be fed with food waste. The purpose of the first installed digester is to serve for educational purposes and to produce cooking fuel for the few people working in the municipal location where the digester is installed. It’s estimated that the digester has a potential to produce daily 0.3 m3 of biogas from 2 kg of food waste which can be used for preparing lunch for the employees or for heating water. In the future, possible applications of anaerobic digestion technology in Quelimane are a municipal biogas plant, cooling systems for the fish industry and biogas based latrines in the less developed areas located outside of the city center.
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