"Green Technology" Can Be Useful And Commercially Profitable: A Focus On Biogas And Intensive Fish Farming
Two training seminars on "green" technologies to farmers, private entrepreneurs interested in the development of biogas technology and organization of intensive fish farming were held in Namangan. Seminars also involved representatives of business support institutions. Seminars were organized by “Aid for Trade” component* of the UNDP/MFERIT joint project "Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan" in cooperation with the Small Grants Programme of the Global Environment Fund (GEF SGP) in Uzbekistan and UNDP Project “Supporting Uzbekistan in transition to a low-emission development path”, with the assistance of Farmers Association.
The first seminar was devoted to biogas technology as a way of developing an alternative source of energy. During the seminar practical and existing opportunities for construction and operation of a simple biogas plant were highlighted. 35 people gathered for the seminar from various regions of Namangan. Seminar participants were informed on biogas technology, different approaches in designing and building a biogas plant, necessary equipment, and most importantly, economic and environmental benefits of using biogas. Also practical information on the experience of constructing and running biogas plants, tested within the framework of the GEF SGP projects, was provided. The project "Supporting Uzbekistan in transition to a low-emission development path" explained the technology on the basis of the biogas plant model. During the “Questions and Answers” session a small contest was held and participants who gave the most complete answer to organizers questions received small presents. Participants were mostly interested in the cost of biogas plant construction and on existing funding opportunities for such projects. For all interested parties, the GEF SGP offered a Model Business Plan for Obtaining a Loan for the Purchase and Installation of a Biogas Plant for the Production of Bio-fertilizers and Biogas (also available on the website www.sgp.uz).
The second seminar, which gathered 25 participants, was devoted to the construction and operation of a fish farm on the basis of intensive technologies as an environmentally and commercially beneficial method of fish farming. Specialist in intensive fish farming briefed the participants with the current state of fish industry in the country, biological characteristics of aquaculture, economics of different methods of fish farm organization, and types of fish species best for farming. In particular, a presentation of a working model of recirculation aquaculture system (RAS), built from locally available materials, was made. Using on the model, the complete cycle of intensive fish farming from planting the larvae till obtaining a full grown marketable fish was explained.
"I am planning to do trout farming and for me to participation in the seminar was very helpful. Now I will study an intensive method of fish farming in more detail" shared his impressions Tokhirjon Umarov from private enterprise "Etti Hazina" of Uchkurgan region of Namangan.
During the seminar, UNDP projects provided information on activities and opportunities for collaboration. It was noted that seminar participants, who offer promising business projects may submit their projects for consideration to UNDP projects. In particular, business proposals can be submitted to the UNDP Project "Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan", which plans to implement several pilot projects within the "Aid for Trade " Component in the Namangan region.
It is expected that the knowledge gained during the seminars will help farmers and entrepreneurs to expand and improve profitability through the introduction of new "green" technologies.