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Biogas to solve LPG crisis in rural Karnataka

According to reports, rural schools, anganwadis and backward class and minority hostels in the Dakshina Kannada (DK) district need not shell out money to get refilled LPG cylinders anymore. DK zilla panchayat plans to set up biogas production plants in schools, anganwadis and backward class and minority hostels which would convert waste into cooking gas.

Many of the rural schools in the district find it difficult to get refilled LPG cylinders due to irregularities in the supply by the gas agencies. Biogas plants will help the schools cut down their dependence on LPG and firewood for cooking and not just save money.

While biogas produced in the plant will be used to cook mid-day meals in schools, it will be used in the kitchens of anganwadis and hostels. The zilla panchayat has already earmarked Rs 20,000 each to set up biogas plants in four centres in the district.

The plants will be initially set up in the anganwadi centres of Daddelakadu and Soornadu in Bantwal taluk, backward class and minority hostels in Bajpe in Mangalore taluk and Balthila in Bantwal taluk.

Total sanitation officer of the district Manjula told STOI that an agency that quotes a suitable price will be given the task of setting up the biogas plants, which will reduce the burden on rural schools, anganwadis and hostels in several ways. In addition to saving money, it will also help to maintain cleanliness in the schools, the anganwadi and hostel premises as kitchen waste and other bio-degradable waste can be used as a raw material for the plant, she said.

The proposed plants will have the capacity to produce biogas, sufficient for two hours of cooking, with two kilograms of waste. Also power can be generated from the plant with the help of a generator, she said, adding that the work will commence soon.

More rural schools will be chosen where such biogas plants will be set up in near future, she added.

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