[Kenya] Greenpact pushes the clean energy envelope with biogas and organic waste fertilizer
Leroy Mwasaru a 20-year-old Kenyan runs Greenpact, a social enterprise creating biogas and fertilizer made from human and organic waste.
In an interview with ‘Tomorrow’s Hero,’ a CNN programme that interacts with young people who are determined to identify and solve problems facing the world, Mwasaru explained the drive behind his enterprise.
“In high school, I used to walk around with a notebook. I used to note down the different problems that I saw each and every day. But then this problem came up and there was no way I was going to ignore it. I chose to address this one because it affected many people... Greenpact began as a high school project where we utilized human waste and organic waste, and we used that to generate biogas and fertilizer to cook light meals in the kitchen for the school.”
“The human waste bioreactor works using the principle of anaerobic respiration. Human waste doesn't have a significant level of energy, so we supplement this with organic waste. You put something in a container and restrict air from it, you get energy. And that energy is CH4, which is methane and that methane is what is useful as biogas.
So that CH4 once it goes through a filtering process, you remove the hydrogen sulfide. We're able to get pure biogas energy. Using these biogas systems we'll actually find that they actually have no waste, because what comes in as a feed will eventually come out as biogas. And the sludge which comes out of the system is very clean organic fertilizer.”
“We envision this solution to Kenyans who are not able to purchase non-renewable sources of energy. The more we continue harming the environment with non-renewable sources of energy...the more we continue depleting the environment. My vision for this invention is that it's something that will be replicated across and be able to grow, not only in size but also in impact. There's still a lot that has to be done especially on the African continent in terms of utilizing the number of resources that we have at hand. And I think I’d be best placed to be able to solve these problems that we face as a continent.”