Impact investment: over 50 000 Cambodians equipped with a biodigester by 2020, thanks to the growth of ATEC
Fondation Ensemble was already a partner of People in Need in Cambodia back in 2014. This year, the Foundation is investing in ATEC, a social enterprise set up by two Australian NGOs to scale up biogas technology. Impacts are expected in numerous fields: social, economic, health and environmental.
Installing a biodigester enables household waste to be used in two ways: as energy (gas, mainly for cooking) and organic fertilizer. Each family can therefore cook without using charcoal or firewood. No more collecting firewood every day or buying expensive charcoal; no more indoor pollution of kitchens and homes due to wood burning! No more pesticide use, with its harmful effects on health! Each biodigester is capable of producing the volume of organic fertilizer needed to cultivate 1.5 hectares of rice. This not only lowers production costs but also leads to higher agricultural yields (+ 5 to 20 %) that are also more sustainable. Finally each unit will save an average family $260 per year.
ATEC is planning to sell 14 500 biodigesters by 2020, thereby scaling up to reduce sources of pollution, fight against deforestation, substantially increase income and participate in the general improvement of people’s living conditions. Nor should we forget that the development of biogas technology helps combat the global warming that affects us all. The use of one biodigester reduces CO2 production by 3 tonnes every year, which means that for 14,500 families the reduction totals 43 500 tonnes annually! An outcome to which the Foundation will in part have contributed, and which may lead us, in the longer term, to envisage new types of support.
Over 25 years, one biodigester provides:
- 6.8 million litres of sustainable biogas
- 492 tonnes of organic fertilizer
- $6 400 in savings
- 75 tonnes of greenhouse gas reduction
- A payback of $9 for every dollar invested