SECMOL is on an ambitious project to proliferate the promotion and dissemination of Biogas Digesters in Ladakh. To this end, SECMOL has modified the design of digester and tested one of its designs in its Campus in Phey Village. The Proof of Concept is achieved. Now, we need to test the other designs in the winter (to find the best one) and proceed with some scientific analysis of the input materials, the output manure and the gas produced. Due to lack of funds, further progress has been stalled. We seek your support to help us help this wonderful, climate-sensitive, geographical minority - the Ladakhi Community.
Introduction - The Problem
There are several problems faced by the people of Ladakh some of them are listed below:
o On one hand, there's lack of clean, domestic fuel:
- Use of firewood, manure & fossil-based fuel,
- Fuel costly & scarce in winter,
- Air Pollution, Black soot production, GHG Emissions - causing melting of precious glaciers & health related problems
- A vicious cycle of dependence on chemical fertilisers
- Huge amount of organic wastes (unsegregated) are dumped openly
- Creates GHG Emissions
- Foul smells
- Environment Hazard, &
- Abundant availability of food for feral dogs – a BIG Problem.
Biogas Digester, is a solution that can easily solve all the above-mentioned problems of this geographical minority community. But, Biogas production is a temperature sensitive process. It works best in the temperature range of 25 - 35 °C.
Biogas production - a successful technology in the plains (low altitude regions) of India - was never adapted to suit the climate of Ladakh - the extremely cold winter. No major development has been made in the field in almost a decade now (as per our knowledge).
This is where SECMOL comes in - Experts in low-cost, passive solar heating technology. Buildings designed by us remain fairly above 20 °C even in the peak winter season.
Proof of Concept
Utilising our expertise, we have been able to modify the design of the digester. The Ladakhi students built the digester under the guidance of the staff and are also responsible for operating and maintaining it. This has helped us to maintain an average temperature of around 27 °C in the digester.
The Way Ahead -
- Phase 1 (Research): Performance comparison of 2 designs of biogas digesters
- Phase 2 (Pilot): Pilot installation in one of the high altitude villages
- Phase 3 (Up-scaling): Installation of atleast one biodigester in all villages in Ladakh with Public – Private Partnership.
To achieve the proof of concept, we have already made investments equivalent of Rs 3 lakhs in terms of manpower and equipment cost.
Further Investment Required:
We need an additional sum of Rs 8 lakhs to support the equipment cost and manpower required for the project.
Additionally, we intend to reimburse SECMOL of the cost it has incurred to support the project - Rs 2 Lakhs.
NOTE: The PI (Konchok Norgay - Technical Director, SECMOL) & the Co-PI (Rohit Ranjan - Research Associate to Mr Sonam Wangchuk) have decided to give-up one-third of their salaries towards the project.
What we intend to do with the money?
This crowdfunding campaign has been initiated by SECMOL to support its ambitious goal for the betterment of the community with the help of the community that believes in sustainability. Though the immediate need is of around Rs 10 lakhs (Rs 8 lakhs + Rs 2 lakhs imbursement), we are looking at the bigger picture (All the three phases). Any amount beyond the stipulated sum of Rs 10 Lakhs, will be used in the further phases of the project.
The project will involve Ladakhi students throughout its process to imbibe a sense of sustainable lifestyle in them & to create possible future experts in the field.
Phase 1 timeline is as shown below:
The phase 2 will proceed as shown below:
With around 28 years of expertise in executing projects with utmost transparency and accountability, SECMOL assures you that every penny you contribute will be put to good use. Donors shall be kept informed about the activities taking place via our mail or Facebook Page (on a monthly basis).
For any further technical query about the project, feel free to contact the Co-PI "Rohit Ranjan" on his email id - "firstname.lastname@example.org" with the subject "Biogas for Ladakh" or follow our facebook page titled "Biogas for Ladakh".