A feasibility study conducted in Bhutan in 2008 concluded that a small scale domestic biogas program is possible with a technical potential of about 20,000 biogas plants especially in the southern belt and inner mountain valleys. The key question for the development of a substantial biogas program was whether the households having enough number of cattle to install biogas plant are willing and able to invest in it and to feed the plant with the required amount of manure on a daily basis. Hence this market study was conducted to analyze the technical and socio-economic feasibility of biogas program, which assessed the willingness and affordability of livestock keeping households to invest in biogas technology.
Half the population depended on agriculture and is therefore based in the village implying that the biogas plants (home-based) can be managed. Farmers have sufficient land to install biogas plants and slurry pits although location of the cowsheds may not always be near the houses and kitchens in some of the households. There were substantial differences in income among sampled households. Some implied living under poverty while some did not earn any income. Those at the lower rung of the income ladder may not be able to afford to invest in biogas plants unless some financing incentives are provided.
In general, farmers owned cattle and other smaller livestock. Most farmers qualify to install biogas since the majority own more than 3 cattle with the average cattle holding being 6 cattle, most of which are night stalled cattle.
This REDD+ feasibility and scoping study is based on a short and condensed stakeholder consultation process with key agencies and officials of a series of government institutions, NGO’s and multilateral organizations. The constructive, critical and sometimes blunt insights, views and comments on REDD+ potential and feasibility in Bhutan are highly appreciated and are essential building stones of this report. The scope of this study is to keep momentum in introducing REDD+ in Bhutan and to asses the nations capacity and knowledge base, essential for compliance and voluntary market entrance, combined with an overall analysis if it is worthwhile to commit to the REDD mechanism, weighing its advantages and disadvantages, scoping the potential and possible impact and contribution to the development goals of RGoB. The study started with a stakeholder consultation of all key agencies and organisations from December 7 to 16 2010, seeking their expert knowledge and insights and benefited from the feedback of many stakeholders participating in the debriefing of the key findings and recommendations on December 20th 2010.