From July 19th-August 6th, the Biomass Energy Department at Yunnan Normal University, my research affiliation, is leading a three week intensive class on biogas technology for scholars and scientists from the developing world, sponsored by the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China. The three week course includes lectures on biogas technology, hands-on lab experiments, and various field visits including a biomass gasification company, fiberglass digester company (producing biogas digesters made from fiberglass), wastewater treatment plant, rural cooking stove company, and biodiesel plant.
The participants are from seven different countries: Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Burma, Uganda, and, Thailand. The participants come from various organizations such as Grameen Shakti, a company that provides energy to rural villagers in Bangladesh and is a sub-division program from the founder of the Grameen Bank. From Indonesia, the Program Coordinator of the UNDP Tsunami Recovery Waste Management, an urban planning official, and biogas technical officer from Hivos Foundation, a European NGO is represented. The participants from Egypt and Iran are researchers in microbiology and agricultural engineering, respectively. From Uganda, a senior energy officer is represented, and from Thailand, we have a professor, researcher, and translator from a renewable energy company.
This opportunity to co-lead the training and interact with the 16 participants has provided me with the opportunity to learn about the state of renewable energy in different countries. I plan on writing more during and after the biogas conference- so stay tuned! So far, we’ve visited a biomass gasification facility and a rural household that uses a fiberglass biogas digester. I’ll write more on the details in the next post.