[KATHMANDU] A project that is bringing clean, efficient energy to rural communities in Nepal received a major boost this month in the form of a deal that rewards it for reducing the country’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The deal is Nepal’s first under the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism, which allows industrialised nations to offset some of their emissions by investing in clean energy projects in developing nations.
The Nepal Biogas Project promotes the use of underground ‘digesters’ that use bacteria to generate methane gas from cattle dung (see Small is bountiful in Nepal’s energy sector). Using methane instead of wood or kerosene to power stoves or lamps can reduce a household’s greenhouse gas emissions by five tonnes a year.
Under an agreement signed on 3 May, the World Bank’s Community Development Carbon Fund will pay Nepal to reduce its emissions by one million tonnes over the next seven years by increasing the use of biogas units.
Khagendra Nath Khanal, senior quality control officer of Biogas Sector Partnership Nepal, the nongovernmental organisation implementing the project, says the new deal will bring the project US$7 per tonne of avoided emissions.