China has provided biogas digesters to households of a small town in Pakistan to recycle wastes of farming, livestock raising and cooking aimed at reducing pollution and protecting environment, said Li Xiangkai, Professor of Lanzhou University, Gansu, China.
“In a small town southeast of Islamabad, we have provided biogas digesters to 50 households so that their wastes from farming, livestock raising, and cooking can be recycled instead of being burned, thus mitigating pollution,” he told.
Pollution has become a prominent issue in Pakistan. In the past month, Lahore repeatedly topped the daily ranking of most polluted city in the world. The adverse impact of chronic or heavy exposure to hazardous air is self-evident.
The small town, or the “green town”, aims to provide a demonstration of circular agriculture and eco-friendly lifestyle.
“The 50 digesters will not only provide electricity to the households, but also reduce stubble burning and protect the environment,” said Professor Li Xiangkai.
Starting from biogas technology, Lanzhou University, in collaboration with Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) and the research institutes in Gansu on natural resources, mechanics, mulching film, and aquaculture, is applying an array of green technologies in the demonstration zone.
From solar water pumps, rainwater collection and purification, vegetable waste recycling for lighting or cooking, agricultural machinery for harvesting or stubble shaving, to trout aquaculture, residents are not only living an environment-friendly life, but also gaining income.
Joint talent cultivation is a major measure to facilitate technology transfer. “In 2017, we set the goal to cultivate 100 Pakistani PhDs in five years. Now, we have seen over 70 graduated with a doctor’s diploma,” said Li.
Among the graduates, some continued academic study as post-doctors in China, and some return to Pakistan to work in relevant field, including deputy head of Natural Resource Division, PARC.
“In the future, we will select more vegetable bases to transform vegetable wastes into energy. We will also work with PARC to develop agricultural waste discharge standards,” introduced Professor Li Xiangkai.