Around three billion people in rural areas still utilize simple stoves that require burning wood, crop refuse or coal. These resources create dangerous air pollution, causing over 3.8 million premature deaths annually. The HomeBioGas startup aims to change this.
HomeBioGas, an organic renewable energy system created by an Israeli startup, aims to reduce the death toll in rural areas while at the same time helping farmers and families reduce their carbon footprint.
The machine safely converts food waste and animal manure into cooking gas and liquid fertilizer. The machine serves as a sustainable tool for urban and rural families living off the grid.
According to the company’s website, the 88-pound machine starts by adding a bacteria to a combination of waste and water, which triggers a fermentation process. The reaction then produces a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide, which can be used as energy.
The system can break down up to six liters of food waste, including meat and dairy. It can also dissolve 15 liters of animal manure, yielding about three hours worth of cooking gas and about 10 liters of liquid fertilizer. Families then can use the resulting gas to cook around three meals a day.
One of the few problems with HomeBioGas, however, is its dependency on warm temperatures. Under 64°F (17°C), the system will decrease its productivity, and it will cease to function at 32°F (0°C).
After a year, though, users eliminate one ton of organic waste, as well as decreasing toxic emissions going into the atmosphere.
Oshik Efrati, CEO of HomeBioGas, told Reuters that the system “will be available to everyone [who] needs it in the developing world.”
The company has already dispensed systems to underserved locations in order to cut back reliance on other types of fuel.
In the summer of 2014, Israel’s Ministry of Environmental Protection bought and installed multiple units at Umm Batin, a Bedouin village without access to clean energy and garbage removal.
The Dominican Republic’s Ministry of Energy and Mining, aiming to reduce the impoverished population’s overdependence on wood, recently signed a contract with HomeBioGas to purchase 50 biodigesters.
The pilot program’s prior success in the two countries, led their governments have decided to purchase even more biodigesters to combat poverty in these locations.
– John Gilmore
Sources: Huffington Post, Israel 21c, IndieGoGo