IFS OFFICER IN MP USES BIODIGESTER TO MEET HOUSEHOLD ENERGY NEEDS
Kshitij Kumar is an IFS officer, deployed in Sagar, Madhya Pradesh. At the government bungalow where he lives with his family, the kitchen needs are not met through LPG cylinders like most of the households across the country. Instead, the fuel is generated by an integrated ‘biodigester’, which has also been providing organic fertilizers, and pesticides to nurture the floral and kitchen gardens in his compound for the last two years. The inspiration came from a few organic farmers that Kshitij and his wife, Neelam Kumari interacted with some years ago. These farmers were sustainably utilizing everything produced in their farms, including waste from the livestock.
However, this plant is not a regular biogas plant. “The plant comprises both biogas and vermicompost units that are connected through an automated pipeline. The pipeline carrying the gas is connected to our kitchen while the vermicompost unit is connected to six beds thriving with earthworms. The latter supplies us with both vermicompost as well as vermiwash. The slurry from the biogas plant is routed back to the beds to keep them active,” explains Kshitij.
The plant does not just produce these substances but also recycles the water used and adds cow dung to the biogas unit. Kshitij feels that we can save about 30%–35% of the water which is routed to an inlet chamber. With the exception of extreme winters, they have been sourcing all their household energy needs through the plant as the earthworms go dormant during this period. As for energy consumption, Kshitij mentions that the plant produces two cubic metres of gas, which is enough to meet the daily kitchen requirements for four hours at a stretch. This easily covers about 70% of what a regular LPG cylinder would provide.