09 Oct 2015
Khouribga, Morocco
Organic Food and Agriculture

Methanization is a technique for giving value to organic material by producing renewable energy and fertilizer. In Morocco, Fatima Zahra Beraich has established Biodôme du Maroc, a firm that builds small-scale methanization plants. Her innovative, eco-friendly solution promises to help farmers produce biogas and fertilizer on their farms, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

While walking around in the Moroccan countryside, Beraich discovered the saddening sight of abandoned gas tanks dotted about the agricultural fields. Born in the Khouribga province, the young student was particularly concerned with the issue of waste management; indeed, she has dedicated her final year thesis to that topic. She then decided to participate in her university’s incubation program, hoping to develop her idea for a company that specializes in building agricultural methanization plants. Beraich’s goal? “To set up a management strategy for agricultural waste, that would fit our culture and the needs of small-scale farmers” she explains.

Biodôme du Maroc was officially established in 2013. Thanks to the support of an engineer and a salesman, Beraich is offering local farmers a simple and innovative system to give value to organic material by producing biogas and fertilizers. This micro-methanization works thanks building a tank, into which livestock manure, organic waste and waste water are poured each day.

“You need a minimum of five adult cows to ensure that the system works continuously. It’s what’s necessary to maintain balance within the degradation process” Beraich explains. The organic material is placed in an oxygen-free tank (known as the “digestor”), where it goes through a natural process of biodegradation. After two to three weeks, the first gas bubbles appear on the water’s surface.

This system is advantageous in numerous ways : it provides farmers with a constant supply of biogas and fertilizers, and also allows for sustainable waste management that reduces greenhouse gas emissions.Fatima Zahra Beraich
Biogas springs from organic waste in Moroccan clean energy initiative | The Switchers

Beraich’s technical, ecological and social innovation is not going unnoticed in the Moroccan countryside: “Some of our clients have had curious people coming in and asking how the system works. That’s why we want to create an association alongside the project, to spread awareness about renewable energies. We also want to help farmers who can’t afford to pay for our services.” Beraich says. For this young Moroccan eco-entrepreneur, ecological and social innovation are made to go hand-in-hand.

 

Biodôme du Maroc Biogas production
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