Striving to meet the Rural Energy Needs in Pakistan



Pakistan possesses 30 million heads of buffalo’s and 33 million cattle’s. Each buffalo/cow head can give on an average 15 kg of dung in a day and therefore a total of 945 m kg of dung is produced in a day and 344925 million kg of dung is produced in a year. About 6 kg of dung can produce 1 m³ of biogas (natural gas). Thus Pakistan can easily produce over 150 million m³ of bio-gas per day and 57488 million m³ of bio-gas per annum. Having 10 million potential livestock owning households, Pakistan has got tremendous potential of developing small and medium biogas plants. In addition, poultry farms also produce huge quantity of poultry manure which can produce even more methane than cow dung. This huge untapped potential can prove a major source of income generation in rural areas through energy production, organic farming and selling the carbon credits that they will earn under the Kyoto protocol besides controlling emission of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

It has been proved that decentralized bio-gas energy production using animal dung is highly sustainable as it is economically viable, socially acceptable besides being environment friendly. A rural household possessing an average of five livestock heads can produce 10-12 m³ of biogas per day sufficient for their daily domestic energy need besides producing decomposed humus as a rich source of organic manure. Such decentralized energy generation plants will not only save the cost of installation of transmission pipe and electricity poles but also save huge foreign exchange that we spend on importing LPG and other fuels. Conservation of the precious forestry resources from cutting as source of fuel-wood is another benefit of the technology. Pakistan being the 5th largest livestock and dairy producing country can easily adopt these technologies at household and community level to ensure energy security in rural areas.