Ever since I read Ian McDonald’s River of Gods, I’ve looked at India from a futuristic, economically oriented perspective to understand how the lives of millions of Indians are being changed by technology. While the cosmopolitan metropolisis of Dehli and Bombay have undergone enormous growth in the last centry, the more interesting changes have happenned among the rural populations. Now, with natural gas prices at an all time high, India is turning to Nature, and the sacred cow for a wholly low-tech solution to their problem. The biogas generator looks set to be the tipping point for cheap, renewable energy for India’s villages. [image by 1village]
Quite simply, a biogas generator is a system that utlizes the gas byproduct of the anaerobic digestion of organic materials for heat and/or flame. These generators, like the one featured in the picture above use manure and organic waste materials to produce methane, which is piped from a central tank via pipes, and can be used by an entire village.