Increased technical potential for African household biodigesters


An SNV technical brief has found that the technical potential for the installation of household biodigesters in Africa has increased by 78% over a twelve-year period.

In this report, “technical potential” is defined as the number of households that can meet two basic requirements – sufficient availability of both dung and water – to run a biodigester. The rise is driven by the surge in the number of agricultural households with access to water and the strong growth of the dairy sector in Africa.

The study which compares FAOSTAT data from 2006 and 2018 has found that over the past twelve years between the first assessment (2006) and the current (2018) that the development has been significant. The most obvious improvement is the increase of 78% (over 2006 value) of the total technical potential. In real terms, this means that the potential number of biodigesters that could be technically installed has increased from 18.5 million to 32.9 million.

The main drivers for this increase are that there has been a 103% increase in agricultural households with access to water despite ongoing urbanisation with the highest growth in Sierra Leone, Angola, Gabon, Libya, Benin, Chad, Cameroon. In addition, there has been a 54% increase in dairy cattle - the highest growth seen in Guinea, the Congo, Uganda, Senegal, Mali, Benin, Chad and Eritrea. The top quintile of technical potential for household biodigesters consists of Ethiopia (5.4 million households), Uganda (3.1 million households), Tanzania (2.4 million households), Kenya (2.3 million households) and Sudan (2.2 million households) in East Africa and Nigeria (3.5 million households) and Burkina Faso (1.8 million households in West Africa.

To download the full technical brief, please click here - Technical potential for household biodigesters in Africa.