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China provides 1,500 biodigester tanks for farmers in provinces

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
The contraption converts animal waste into usable gas. Supplied

China has provided 1,500 biodigester tanks for distribution to farmers in seven provinces for them to convert animal waste into cooking gas and protect the environment.

Chen Visal, head of Prey Veng province’s agriculture department’s animal health and production bureau, yesterday said that early this month, China provided 200 large biodigester tank to the province, five of which have already been installed.

“These biodigester tanks are bigger than the ones we used in the past, and they are easy to use by just putting the droppings into the tank, and it will be converted into gas,” he noted. This is useful for cooking and also helps the environment by reducing the bad odour from animal droppings.”

Mr Visal said that biodigester tanks will be distributed to farmers who have more than ten cows and farms that raise more than 50 pigs or 3,000 chickens, noting that they will have to bear the transportation and installation costs.

He noted that since 2008, under the National Biodigester Programme, the province has been provided with more than 2,500 biodigester tanks.

Mr Visal said that apart from Prey Veng, the tanks from China have been distributed to Tboung Khmum, Kampong Cham, Siem Reap, Pursat, Kampong Chhnang and Preah Vihear provinces.

He noted that Tboung Khmum province received 300 tanks, while the rest were given 200 tanks each.

Tan Phannara, director of the General Animal Health and Production Department, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Heng Piseth, director of the Tboung Khmum provincial agriculture department, yesterday said that they received the 300 tanks from China late last year.

He noted that a team from China installed five tanks then and the remainder will be set up by Cambodian officials this year.

“The provision of biodigester tanks from China is very important for Cambodian farmers, as they can convert animal droppings into gas for cooking and reduce the use of firewood, Mr Piseth said. “The waste from the tank can also be used to make natural fertilisers for crops, too.”

Choun Phary, a farmer in Prey Veng province who received a biodigester tank, yesterday said its use has improved his family’s living standards and also the environment around the house.

“The use of this biodigester tank helps our family by providing gas for cooking and reduces the need for firewood,” he said. “The tank also converts the animal dropping into fertilizer which we use in our rice fields. We can save a lot of money and time.”

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