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Biogas: Your Sustainable Solution For Energy

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Unlike business rivals, farmers are usually willing to share their experiences since none of them has ready solutions for all farming challenges. That is how Mukiibi’s family in Masaka overcomes challenges.

“Our secret is to blend the old and the new farming techniques. We dug a seven-foot deep pit and built a biogas plant. Given the shortage of cow dung, we get some from neighbours,” Mukiibi says.

“I find biogas a cheaper alternative source of energy on the farm,” he adds.

Most households still rely on traditional sources of energy like firewood and charcoal for cooking and lanterns for lighting. This dependency on such sources of energy often leads to deforestation and soil degradation.

Mukiibi’s wife says: “Collecting firewood is time consuming and its use has negative consequences on the environment. On the other hand, biogas offers many practical benefits to our family. There is no more indoor air pollution and money that was spent on buying paraffin for the lamps is saved. In future we will use human waste as well.”

“Our garden has gained its fertility because I use the bio-slurry as fertiliser. Biogas as a renewable source of energy is a powerful weapon for climate change mitigation,” Mukiibi explains.

Mukiibi was a trader in Nyendo in 1974. “We tried to fill up the vacuum created by the expulsion of the Asian business community. But what followed was an economic war that we could not fight. We used our savings to buy three acres of land here and began planting bananas, pineapples, coffee and beans.”

Mukiibi and his wife later went for a course in book-keeping.

“The course enabled us to foot bills for our children and orphans. We were taught how to maintain and improve soil fertility, keep books of accounts, write project proposals and protect the environment.”

To confront current market demands, their shamba has undergone numerous changes which makes them multipurpose agriculturalists.

“The farm provides a diversified and balanced food basket. My agricultural output has multiplied while using the same space of four acres. Besides clients in the country, we are looking to export our products across the East African region,” Mukiibi says.

From 70 birds they harvest six trays of eggs selling at sh11,000. They get about 15 litres of milk per day from the dairy farm, 10 goats valued at sh120,000 each, four sheep valued at between sh60,000 and sh100,000. They also grow pawpaws, coffee and have 70 mango trees.

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