From sewage to affordable electricity
Six entrepreneurs with academic backgrounds in Engineering, Information Technology, Computer Science, Statistics and Human Resources formed a project group, MK Research and Development, that turns sewage into bio-gas to generate electricity. The electricity conducted from the project will be used to supply energy to rural areas especially those in remote areas.
According to Meduletu Kamati, founder member of MK Research and Development, the growing energy demand coupled with ever-increasing electricity prices has motivated the group to research viable options of generating electricity using natural resources. Sewage was the best alternative that the young reserachers opted to use.
“Sewage is a resource which is seen by many only as an un-wanted waste. There are sewage ponds which have existed for more than 20 years where sewage comes in, most of the water evaporates and the biomass body lies in the ponds un-utilised. To us this is a waste of natural resources and thus we decided to look at how we can tap into the energy potential these ponds hold, “ said Kamati.
Although the project has not yet been commissioned, Kamati said the funding they received from the Environmental Investement Fund will be used to purchase equipment such as bio-digesters and generators as well as other physical assets that will enable them to successfully run the project. The research group recived N$325,000 from the Environmental Investement Fund at the fund’s first anniversary last month.
Kamati said the electricity will be supplied to schools and clinics in the rural areas as learners in such areas also require electricity for studying and using the internet. “But with no electricity supply, they lack the crucial resources which would enhance their development,” he added.
Apart from generating electricity for rural areas, MK Research is also planning to extend and grow the project to employ the youth in the rural areas. “We wish to diversify our operations to offer various services such as Industrial Research, Analytical and Educational services. We also wish to grow the organisation to a point where it can become a public company with hundreds of Namibian shareholders,” Kamati said.