Capetown: “Not only my company, but the entire sector should benefit from my work”. These are the words of Biogas Unite co-founder Katrin Puetz during the official launch of this first of its kind initiative by a private sector in Africa on October 20th at the Africa Energy Week in Cape Town, South Africa.
BiogasUnite aims at rewriting the story of biogas in Africa. It is here to improve the image of biogas by making all systems work, and to create a fair and free market for all entrepreneurs on the continent.
Bringing this initiative to life has been a labor of love for co-founders Katrin Puetz, David Ewusi-Mensah, Michel Joie, Jules Perfides Tamegue and Kimberley Netshivhale. “With the help of over 130 biogas entrepreneurs, we came up with a way to give biogas the chance it deserves because it is a magical solution”, said Katrin Puetz. BiogasUnite is not limited to biogas entrepreneurs, but for everyone who shares similar ideas.
Every year, Africa uses 700 million m3 of wood for cooking, 480 million tons for fuelwood, and 180 million tons for charcoal. Using biogas for cooking could solve a fair share of Africa’s energy problems. Over 300 million people could benefit from this technology by having an affordable, modern source of cooking energy, saving up to 600.000 lives per year. In just Africa, it could reduce carbon emissions by 434 mio tons of carbon dioxide, eliminate waste and feces pollution, increase soil fertility, enhance crop yields, generate jobs and income. It makes people self-sufficient with cooking energy and allows a healthy and organic way of farming. If done right!
During the launch presentation, Katrin unravelled the mystery of what BiogasUnite is about: a Pan-African repair service for every failed system. No single additional system should fail from now on and BU will take responsibility for biogas systems being brought back to life. “The BiogasUnite database will give users the chance to register their systems and get a free service until all biogas systems that can be repaired are up and running again”, said Pütz.
The database will serve as a match-making platform between owners of failed systems and biogas technicians. “As a result, we boost the sector, technicians and installers have lots of work and can be proud of their jobs again, because their customers are happy. This is the way to excite people about biogas – when it actually works for them”.
BiogasUnite’s ultimate goal is to create a fair market for biogas entrepreneurs. “There is a very clear understanding of the biogas potential in Africa. The majority of biogas systems failing and the market distortion through uncoordinated provision of development aid, missing accountability for the outcome of aid projects and the lack of regulations for the protection of entrepreneurs – for me this is not acceptable,” is how Katrin Puetz phrases the problem.
To make the future of biogas in Africa a success, the initiative seeks to partner with African investors, governments, development organizations and policy makers. However, there is a business model involved and all that is needed is a seed investment for the development of the database and the repair service. An estimated EUR 750.000 will help to bring tens of thousands of biogas systems back to life and boost the private biogas sector to independence of foreign aid.
For anyone who is enthusiastic about this new way of taking responsibility and pride of an African owned biogas sector, please support this initiative.
Contact: email@example.com for detailed information.