National Biogas Programme Nicaragua improves quality of life


The National Biogas Programme (NBP) in Nicaragua has delivered, as per November 30, over $219,358 in incentive bonuses to some 500 rural farming families who have already built, installed and are also using biogas systems. The incentive bonus is $480 and is applied to the investment made by ranching families to this technology.

The World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that 4.3 million people die each year in the world by air pollution emitted by rudimentary household biomass and coal stoves. Use of the first 500 biogas systems has improved the quality of life of 3,000 people who stopped cooking in deadwood stoves, thus reducing air pollution in homes and respiratory diseases. User families of biodigesters have increased crop yields between 30% -40% with the use of organic fertilizer (biol) and have achieved savings by not buying chemical fertilizers and deadwood. 

According to farmer and coffee producer Julio Zeledon, from the Payacuca community in Terrabona - Matagalpa, before having the digester he consumed 16 brands of firewood per year (each brand contains 800 slices of wood), in which he invested $231 without including transportation.

Every day 3,000 beneficiaries have eliminated the use of 6,000 kilograms of firewood. In addition, biol (organic fertilizer), provides savings of 50% -100% by substitution effect. "A biogas system of 9 cubic meters generates in 27 days the equivalent to 100 pounds of urea at 46% of nitrogen", as indicated by results of a chemical analysis of biol made by the NBP. It means annual savings of $329. "Biodigesters installed up to date reduce 2,790 tons of CO2 emitted yearly", according to biogas specialist and engineer Carlos Bueso.

The NBP is implemented by SNV Nicaragua, in partnership with HIVOS with an investment of over $6 million dollars funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) through the Multilateral Investment Fund (FOMIN), the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) , SNV, HIVOS and local contributions.