The Indonesia Domestic Biogas Programme (IDBP) has been registered as a Voluntary Gold Standard Programme of Activities. Although the verification of emission reductions is still ongoing, it has been found that each biodigester reduced emissions by approximately 4 tonnes of CO2e per year.
Gold Standard is a well-respected carbon standard registration and verification organisation set up by NGOs such as the WWF in order to provide a carbon credit system for voluntary carbon emission reduction and sustainability projects in developing countries. Verification means a project and its design have been assessed by an independent third party. Registration means the project has been registered in a database or as a certified standard, like Gold Standard.
In Indonesia, the IDBP is called the ‘BIRU’ programme. BIRU means ‘blue’ and is the acronym for ‘Biogas Rumah’, or ‘biogas for the home’. Leaning on worldwide experience, the BIRU programme seeks to distribute biogas digesters as a local sustainable energy source by developing a commercial, market-oriented sector for them that also provides job and business opportunities for masons and partner organisations in construction.
The BIRU programme is implemented by Hivos, working closely with the Indonesian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources and the SNV (Netherlands Development Organization). The first phase (2009-2012) was funded by the Dutch embassy in Indonesia.
Domestic biogas provides a sustainable way for individual households with livestock to reduce dependence on firewood and expensive fossil fuels: a biogas digester converts the dung into biogas that can be used for cooking and lighting. The slurry left over from this process is also an excellent organic fertiliser that can be used to improve crop yields.
Cooperation with the private sector is one of the key factors behind the success of the programme. In Indonesia for example, dairy cooperatives play a significant role in the domestic biogas programme. They are better able to reach farmers, and many of them have access to funds (e.g. from Nestlé or the Rabobank Foundation) to support farmers with biogas credit.