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Socio-economic, health and agriculture benefits of rural household biogas plants in energy scarce developing countries: A case study from Pakistan

ABSTRACT

Biogas can be used as main component towards energy scarcity. It is important to find out social and economic assessment of different commonly adopted biogas plants in deprived rural areas at domestic level. The study design was based on questionnaire, field visit, observation and manipulation in terms of change in energy usage, kind of benefits, incidence of disease, change in sanitation, gender empowerment and operational activities of biogas plant. The results of questionnaire showed that installation of biogas plant has resulted in economic, social and health improvements by reducing expenditure of fuel and fertilizer along with time saving and lessen cases of disease. Biogas plants were mostly installed in those houses that have higher number of family members ranged from 12 to 15. Saving on energy expenditure was 53.3% due to use of biogas. It appeared that 43% women were getting more benefits from biogas by saving 50% of their time which was previously used for collection of wood. Total monthly saving in term of socio-economic and health was 48$ by the use of biogas plant of single household. There was 25% reduction in respiratory ailment and cardiovascular disease due to the reduction in air pollution by the use biogas plant.