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La differenza fra la genialità e la stupidità è che la genialità ha dei limiti (A.Einstein).


Germany - European Leader of Renewable Energy

At the end of the Second World War, due to the shortage of electricity from oil and natural gas, in Germany appeared the first biogas plant within few farms. In fact,  farmers themselves can obtain cheaply biogas from the digestion of cattle and sheep manure. These first trials disappear during the coming 50 years to improve the general economic level of the country.
The problem of the cost of energy comes back again with the two oil crises of the 70s and lead experts to propose a more detailed studies on biogas. This new phase is a setback to the new boom that began in the mid-80s and continues to this day.
In Germany, biogas plants spread in recent years thanks to the Energies Act of 1992 : it guarantees fixed amounts for all producers of electricity fed into the public grid and produced from renewable sources. This economic security in return has allowed a greater diffusion of private investment in the energy sector, supported by a new law passed in February 2000 that provides new and even more affordable amounts for each product KW ( € 0.22 per Kw ) for a period of 20 years.
This law together with the improvement of technological knowledge has led to a boom of plants in Germany which now numbers nearly 6,000 agricultural units, of which 1,200 made ​​in only in 2010. The industry recycles waste materials in 210 facilities and the community in nearly 1,000 plants, including 200 from the reuse of organic waste, energy and heat.



China like many other countries in Asia uses energy generated by waste decomposition since ancient times. In the middle of 20th century lots of small biogas plants worked in coastal regions of China, build and run by prosperous families.

Those plants are hand-made with underground, non-insulated digesters. The design is very simple, but the plants are cheap and effective. They are feded with animal dung and organic residues from the house. Once a year they are emptied and the digested substrate is given to the fields as a fertiliser. The biogas is collected and used for cooking and lighting.

In 70s-80s China government defined biogas as most effective and rational type of fuel for rural regions and provided support of farmers and researchers in that respect. Government support gave a strong impact to growth of biogas industry in China.

About 7 million small biogas plants were operated in China by 1999 and over 20 million persons use biogas currently as a fuel.

According to government program for development of rural and industrial biogas plants in China, it is planed 15% annual increase in number of installation. The development target is 80 million units by 2020, including the climatically colder regions in the northern parts of China.


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