Date Posted: June 4th, 2012
This week’s story provides an example of an alternative energy source for household and business use. Alternative energies can be desirable for several reasons: they protect landscapes from the negative effects of deforestation; they reduce carbon emissions and therefore mitigate global warming; they cut costs and can be produced from waste materials on the farm; and they may provide income-generating opportunities.
The following four news stories and reports talk about alternative sources of energy in Africa.
Uganda: Cut Fuel Costs With the Fireless Stove: http://allafrica.com/stories/201205211271.html
Tanzania: Call to Recycle Wastes for Alternative Energy: http://allafrica.com/stories/201205040082.html
Africa: Five Renewable Sources of Energy for Farmers in Developing Countries: http://allafrica.com/stories/201204170944.html
CTA Rural Radio Resource Pack: Renewable Energy in Agriculture: http://www.anancy.net/documents/file_en/RRRP-08-3-en.pdf
Farm Radio International has distributed several scripts on alternative energy sources. See the following:
Three Fishing Ladies with a Message about Solar Dryers (Package 79, Script 6, November 2006) http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/79-6script_en.asp
Biodiesel production: Generating income for small-scale farmers in Kenya (Package 87, Script 7, April 2009) http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/87-7script_en.asp
SolarAid’s micro solar project in rural Tanzania: Tremendous solar energy potential (Package 87, Script 6, April 2009) http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/87-6script_en.asp
Women are actively involved in planting jatropha in a Malian village (Package 87, Script 4, April 2009) http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/87-4script_en.asp
Choose Energy Sources Wisely (Package 50, Script 3, November 1998) http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/50-3script_en.asp
Farm Radio Weekly has published the following stories on alternative energy:
Uganda: The fruits of innovation – Ugandan company wins green energy award (by Joshua Kyalimpa, for Farm Radio Weekly, in Kampala, Uganda) (FRW #25, June 2008) http://weekly.farmradio.org/2008/06/16/2-uganda-the-fruits-of-innovation-%E2%80%93-ugandan-company-wins-green-energy-award-by-joshua-kyalimpa-for-farm-radio-weekly-in-kampala-uganda/
If you wish to produce a program or series of programs on alternative sources of energy in rural areas, start by asking farmers in your area if they use any biomass (plant or animal matter) for energy. Many farmers use wood and animal dung for cooking and heating, but they may also use other plant materials such as oil from oil-seed crops and briquettes made from various plants. Ask if there are any progressive farmers who have found unique and environmentally-friendly ways to produce energy.
Speak also to NGOs and different levels of government that are interested or involved in renewable energy for cooking, heating, or generating electricity. Ask experts if there is a potential for biofuels or other alternative sources of energy – e.g., solar or wind energy – in your area. What would it take to realize that potential? Would it require funding? Farmer education? Or perhaps just a simple willingness to consider something new? Find out from these experts whether there are short- or long-term plans to increase the supply of fuel from renewable sources in your area.