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A collaborative meeting between the Bank and "Biogas for Better Life, an African Initiative" is scheduled to hold in Tunis from 21–23 April 2008. Two members of the Initiative, Paul Hassing, Deputy Director in the Department of Water and Environment in the Dutch foreign affairs ministry at The Hague, and Chudi Ukpabi of Biogas for Better Life, will participate in the meeting.
"Biogas for Better Life an Africa Initiative" is modeled after a successful program in Asia. The initiative’s vision is to establish market-oriented partnerships between governments, the private sector, civil society and international development partners. It is an African initiative offering investment and business opportunities.
Biogas installations have a positive impact on health and the environment as they convert farm waste such as animal dung into energy for cooking and lighting while the residue can be used to fertilize farm crops. Cooking using biogas is much cleaner and cuts the risk of respiratory and eye diseases. Women, in particular, benefit from this technology as it reduces the burden of fuelwood collection and relieves them of smoke-filled kitchens.
The AfDB continues to collaborate with Biogas for Better Life with a view to sharing knowledge and experiences as well as technology transfer for the benefit of Regional Member Countries (RMCs). A number of collaborative meetings have so far been held between the Bank and Biogas for Better Life. In addition, the AfDB also participated in a recent study tour of biogas installations in Nepal which was organized by Biogas for Better Life.
The collaborative 21 – 23 April 2008 meeting will be organized to firm up on an accelerated plan of action for the integration of biogas technologies in selected Bank-funded projects.
The AfDB has identified a list of potential projects which are being considered for possible integration of biogas technology components.