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Economic Impact of Biogas Plants on the Rural Households- A Case Study of District Sargodha, Punjab-Pakistan

Noreen Akhtar, Syed Iftikhar Hussain Shah, Naseem Akhter, Muhammad Ali Tarar, Sarfraz Ahmad, M. Babar Akram

Abstract


Pakistan is facing acute energy crisis of its history. The electricity shortfall is so high that all the sectors of society are facing electricity breakdown. The major task of the government is also the sustainability of power sector of the country. Power sector is dependent on imported fuels like furnace oil, coal and diesel. Decentralized development of renewable energy is the demand of the time. Pakistan is blessed with the huge population of livestock whose dung can be utilized for biogas production. Biogas is a cheap, clean and renewable source of energy for dairy farmers which can solve energy demand of farm and home with one time investment.This study was carried out to find out the economic impact of domestic scale cow/buffalo dung based biogas plants installed by Pakistan Dairy Development Company (PDDC). This study was carried out in villages of District Sargodha, Punjab, Pakistan. A sample of 72 farmers was selected who were having biogas plants and were using them for more than six months using purposive sampling technique. It was found out by the study that 41.4 percent of the families were using biogas plants form 18-24 months and 69.4 percent of the families were having large size i.e. 20 cubic meter biogas plants. Majority of the families (41.7 percent) constructed biogas plants with cost of 50,000 to 60,000 Pak Rupees per biogas plant. Financial savings because of using biogas were of importance as 30.6 percent of the families were saving 3000-3500 Pak Rupees per month and 20.8 percent of the families were saving more than 3500 Pak Rupees per month because of the usage of biogas. The size of biogas, family members and cost of biogas are significantly associated with the savings because of using biogas plants. Biogas technology is a successful technology for the areas having raw material and space. Government should popularize biogas technology in rural areas to meet the energy demand of rural masses. The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of biogas plants on the rural households. 


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