photo by Tracy Hunter (Flickr Creative Commons)

We’ve all got to worry about our environment, even refugees. Actually, especially refugees: they often live in squalid conditions with poor sanitation and lack basic resources.

Environmental engineers at the University of Weimar in Germany are working on a solution to sewage problems at refugee camps by converting it into something else they need: fuel.

No shit? Yes, shit.

I’m thinking of using this biogas for cooking purposes. The energy could also be used for other purposes. Lighting is also a huge problem in refugee camps. Providing light at night would improve safety.

–Eckhard Kraft, University of Weimar

According to the UNHCR there are currently about 300 refugee camps containing a total 2.4 million people with an average of 20,000 per camp. Around 1/3 of them are without proper latrines or waste disposal, which leads to increased risk for disease.

Using biogas as fuel also cuts down on pollution. There would be less need for wood fires and burning methane is more eco friendly than releasing it into the atmosphere.

Of course, there are safety and environmental concerns with methane gas storage. Methane is an asphyxiant as well as being highly flammable.

Read the entire story from Deutsche Welle:

Refugee camps to use gas from human waste

About The Author: Graham Land

Greenfudge editor and London-based writer Graham Land grew up in the suburbs of Washington, DC, where he was part of the local hardcore punk scene, playing in several bands. Through this musical movement he became involved in grass roots interests such as anti-racist activism, animal rights and Ecology. In 2000 he relocated to Europe, eventually earning an MA from Malmö University in Sweden. He has also lived in Japan, Ireland, Portugal and Greece.


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