After two years of planning and preparation, the Bavarian biogas plant manufacturer Snow Leopard Projects GmbH (SLP) from Reisbach has began with the construction of a 2 MW biogas plant in Kenya. Snow Leopard Projects GmbH (SLP) is a company that develops innovative high-performance biogas technologies specifically for waste, agricultural by-products such as straw, horse manure, and fibrous biomass from nature conservation and landscape management. To date SLP has built biogas plants from 10 kW to 4 MW in 10 countries on four continents.
In Kenya, Naivasha was chosen as a location for the biogas plant because it is the center of the vegetable and flower production thus enabling the daily processing of up to 100 tons of vegetable waste products into biogas, electricity and heat.
The SLP biogas plant is different from the conventional corn silage biogas plants because they have an upstream batch hydrolysis, which works on the same principle as a cow’s stomach processing straw and other fibrous material for energy production.
Mike Mason, the project developer and investor from Oxford, England said, that “comparative research has shown that SLP biogas plants are three times faster and efficient than the conventional silage biogas.”
This biogas plant will decrease the demand for diesel generators that are currently used to provide power and probably replace the need for accessing power from the public electricity grid. It is estimated that 15 cents per kilowatt hour that will be saved by using electricity generated by this biogas plant.
Once the biogas generators are stable and run smoothly, voltage fluctuations in the power grid that have caused damaged and destroyed the electric motors will soon be history.
Also the vegetable waste will be processed into fertilizer, replacing artificial fertilizers, which are currently used and pollute lake Naivasha when they flow into it.
Catherine Danner, CEO of Snow Leopard Project said, “We are the first to build a biogas plant of this dimension in Africa. We have built more than 10 small plants, and this is our first big project in Africa. “
In late summer 2014, the biogas plant is scheduled for commissioning and experienced biogas plant operators from Bavaria will take over the operation. Since many of these plant installations are from Bavaria, this will be a Bavarian biogas plant in East Africa. SLP plans to have more biogas plants in different African countries and talks to start these projects are underway.