La Gonâve, Haiti - Biogas/Biodigester Workshop for ASHOG's Jean Rony
You can read more about that in the conclusion to my series on La Gonâve, which includes links to the entire series at the bottom.
While I was unable to raise enough at this time to get me to the island for next week's workshop, Jean Rony Toussaint has had all but his transportation costs covered. This includes the training/workshop, meals and any transportation once he's there. However, it does not include his transportation (and meals) to and from the workshop, which involves a ferry ride across the channel and a taxi or bus to a suburb of Port au Prince.
TH Culhane, Co-founder of Solar C³ITIES, will be there to lead the workshop in cooperation with HEART. It sounds like Jean Rony will be able to share a room with him, offering more opportunities to learn and network.
For those that missed it, the biodigester is an amazing means to compost human manure and other green output (scraps, animal manure, etc), capturing the methane for heating purposes, purifying the liquid for watering plants and breaking down the solids for later use as compost.
Biogas From Humanure
This is very similar to a typical septic system, with a tank and leach lines, though perhaps a little more intentional in that it captures the gas. Where needed, the gas could be used for heating or even energy generation. In Haiti, where it really doesn't get cold, a methane stove is used for preparing meals.
A family of six can generally produce enough gas to prepare one meal per day. If just a little cow manure is added, there will be more than enough to prepare all meals. In a community setting, they sky is the limit, though it could be that so much methane would be produced that it wouldn't be captured. In such cases it would be better to have several and link them for when one exceeds its holding capacity.
The one we saw at Haiti Communitere was very efficient, intuitive and stacked functions nicely. The sink you would wash your hands in drained into the toilet tank, so the water was used twice. From the toilet, it went through a trap then into a large rubber bladder that was sunk into the ground.
At the top of the bladder is a line that captures the methane. It goes through a couple of gravity filters to help dry the gas before it moves on to a holding tank near the kitchen. In their case, the gas ran a full-sized oven/stove. Most setups use a small countertop two-burner stove.
Any overflow from this planter goes into a garden, pond or banana circle, depending on the setup. At this point the liquid is basically just water, and suitable for about anything you'd want to do with it. Yes, that would include drinking, but the yuk factor and just being careful would likely be the better course, especially when water sources are available.
The workshop will equip Jean Rony to build a biodegester and train others on the island to do so as well. It's not clear whether we'll be able to get supplies for the first one or not, but the training will be helpful.
These can be built with ferro-cement, plastic, rubber or any sealed container. The top portion can be sealed by the water level, even if it's not rubber, allowing the gas to build up under a floating dome. So there is a degree of versatility that can be employed in order to adapt to available materials.
ASHOG - Association du Secours aux Handicapes et Orphelins
Opportunity to Help
As noted earlier, Jean Rony's expenses are largely covered. One donor is covering his room during his time there and he's received a scholarship for the training. All that's left are travel expenses, including meals on the road. These come out to about US$200.
All SBD and/or Steem from this post will be forwarded to him in the form of US$ via MoneyGram. If you would like to make an additional donation of Steem, please make the appropriate note in your transfer and I'll be sure to apply it. Donations can be made via other channels too, if someone prefers. And, of course, you can always send funds to help with the children's home and school either through me, on the Crowdrise site or directly to Jean Rony Toussaint in Anse a Galets, La Gonâve, Haiti, via MoneyGram or Western Union.
In the event that this post receives more SBD/Steem than needed, the additional liquid payout, plus whatever SBD or Steem in my wallet by that time (currently 18 SBD), will be sent to help sponsor a child's education (one student costs between US$150 and $200/yr). If enough funds are raised for a full year of education, Steemit will be named as the sponsor here. Of course, you can make a donation or sponsor a child directly through that site via PayPal as well.
NOTE: The ASHOG site is currently down, so Jean Rony is looking for options. Steemit will be included there as well, when the children are listed.
Please pray for Haiti and others in the Caribbean as Hurricane Matthew is already hitting Jamaica and threatens to hit Haiti tonight, with La Gonâve right in its path. You may recall that by regenerating the island, it will become more resilient to these storms.
Thank you for reading and for your part in helping the people of La Gonâve, Haiti.
Logo courtesy of @oecp85