We are a multinational team of five Social Entrepreneurship students from Hult International Business School, London, with backgrounds in consultancy, finance, international development and non-profit management.
Our team is in Indonesia as consultants for a biogas project based out of Gambung, a small village in West Java. While we are doing this for school as an action learning project, the parent NGO that’s hosting us, Satoe Indonesia, will run it long after we leave. The next five weeks will be used as a pilot in order to satisfy all stakeholders and ensure that we can make this project sustainable. In essence, there are a number of factors that our team will be monitoring. Our ultimate goal is to reduce the level of pollution in the river while simultaneously finding revenue streams for the biogas plant to sustain itself in the long run, and show that the project itself will be scalable throughout Indonesia.
In Gambung, a farming community, farmers routinely dump all farm waste into the river. Cow dung, in particular, if not used as a natural fertilizer, is dumped into the river where villagers bathe in and drink from. Our project utilizes all this cow waste that will be collected for the biogas digester. Methane gas that is produced is then collected and can be used for cooking, heating, and electricity generation. What then remains in the digester can be used as a fertilizer and either sold to villagers or neighboring communities, or given back to the farmers to sustain the product cycle.
The pilot will run out of a Rumah Pintar, a community development center that is a part of Satoe Indonesia. The Rumah Pintar (which translates to Smart House) is a place where children come to continue learning after school. The energy generated from the biogas digester can power the lights, computers, and heating of the Rumah Pintar for up to six hours a day (depending on how much cow waste is collected).