The government has taken initiative to set up 64,000 biogas plants in 64 districts of the country in order to create huge employment for poverty alleviation.
As part of its move, the Ministry of Youth and Sports is undertaking a project titled “Integrated Resource Management Phase III based on massive technology for poverty alleviation”.
The main objective of the project is to provide employment and self-employment to the rural youth by setting up cattle and poultry farms and biogas plants through training and loan assistance and to meet the demand for protein through production of milk, eggs, meat and so on in the country, official sources said.
In addition, the project will reduce the use of fuel wood for cooking and create opportunities for smokeless, hygienic, cost-effective and timely cooking, they added.
Proper use of biodegradable waste in biogas plants will enable development of sewerage and health systems and production of micro-nutrient rich organic manure for use in agricultural land, they mentioned.
An official of the Planning Commission said that the meeting of the Project Evaluation Committee (PEC) was held on December 7 last year after receiving a proposal from the Ministry of Youth and Sports.
It has been recommended to present it at the meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec), he added.
Once approved, the project involving Tk 209.17 crore will be implemented by the Department of Youth Development by December 2023, they said.
Dr Shamsul Alam, senior secretary and member of the general economics department at the Planning Commission, said, “Bangladesh's Perspective Plan 2021-2041 under the program titled ‘My Village My City’ to build civic waste management in rural areas of the country to ensure civic amenities, create a positive environment for rural employment, encourage agro-based small scale industries and create quality opportunities in rural areas.”
Accordingly, it is important to strengthen the training activities, he said adding that, there are plans to encourage all types of investment in these areas.
Nasima Begum, a member of the socio-economic infrastructure department of the planning commission in charge of the project, said, “The project is environmental friendly and people-oriented. If this is implemented, it will be possible to develop the country's ecosystem by reducing environmental pollution through the use of renewable energy for cooking and power generation by setting up 64,000 biogas plants in all upazilas of 64 districts of the country.”
Establishment of farms and biogas plants through micro-credit assistance will play a helpful role in expanding employment and self-employment opportunities for rural youth, she said adding that, this will create opportunities for small business and self-employment in rural areas and the development of cottage industries.
With these considerations, the project has been recommended for submission to the ECNEC, she mentioned.
According to the sources, by setting up biogas plants in integrated farms, biogas produced as an alternative fuel will create smokeless, comfortable, healthy and timely cooking opportunities, generate electricity, create odorless and pollution free hygienic environment in cattle and poultry farms.
To this end, 4,038 plots were set up in 10 upazilas from July 2006 to June 2011 at a cost of Tk 20 crore through a first phase project titled Innovative Management of Resources for Probability Elevation through Comprehensive Technology (IMPACT) funded by the Government of Japan.
In addition, the Government's Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation Department (IMED) Impact (Phase-I) project evaluation with a total government funding of a total of 74.97 crore estimated expenditure from January 2014 to June 2019 for massive technology-based integrated resource management (II).
A total of 31,000 biogas plants have been successfully set up in 66 upazilas of 61 districts of the country.
Following this, initiatives have been taken to implement the third phase of the project to expand the project across the country based on local demand.
As part of its move, the government has taken initiative to set up 64,000 biogas plants in 64 districts of the country. An average of one thousand plants will be set up in each district.