Biogas Energy Generation Power Plant Using Animal Waste at Negelle-Arsi Town of Ethiopia


Amount Raised


Total Investors

Project Overview

This project involves the establishment of Biogas energy generation power plant in Arsi Negelle town. Cattle fattening is the mainstay for households in Arsi Negelle town, which comes with a downside of unsafe disposal of the cattle waste into the town waterways or open landfills. The main infrastructure this project proposes to build is the Biogas energy power plant and electric grid line, which uses the cattle dung as a primary ingredient.


  • Energy
Funding Goal


• Generating electricity from the biogas power plant using cattle waste as a substrate.
• Providing electricity to households with no access at an affordable price.
• Producing organic fertilizers as a byproduct of the biogas energy power plant.
• Income generation from the biogas plant (electricity & fertilizer)
• Improving the health and sanitation status of Arsi Negelle town.
• Mitigate Methane (CH4) emission due to open disposal of cattle manures.
• Job creation for Negelle Arsi town residents.
• Avoid the discharge of cattle manure into the waterways and protect the surrounding water ecosystem.
• Making Negelle Arsi town a learning hub for other potential biogas energy generation plants elsewhere. 10. Resolves the disputes among the Negelle Arsi town residents.

Progress Tracker


  • Phase 1 (Completed)

    Definition of Project Objectives and outline– In the first phase the objectives of the project, which is the establishment of the biogas energy generation power plant has been defined as an overarching goal. The multidimensional socio-economical and environmental benefits of the proposed project for the residents of the Arsi Negelle town are also identified.

  • Phase 2

    Developing the feasibility study – In the feasibility study phase availability of substrates for the biogas energy generation, availability of construction materials and provision of construction sites and other necessary supports from local authorities was assessed.

  • Phase 3

    Construction design and specifications- At this phase the engineering team will be mainly responsible in preparing sketches of the biogas energy power plant, estimation of costs and material specifications. In addition, bidding documents will also prepared at this phase.

  • Phase 4

    Pre-construction stage – At the pre-construction stage the project team will be organized and technical capacity building training will be offered to local workers . Procurement of required materials and equipments for the biogas energy generation power plant will also be made at this stage based on the specifications.

  • Phase 5

    Construction Phase – In this phase the construction activities will be carried out according to the agreed designs. While building the biogas energy power plant quality control will be conducted simultaneously.

  • Phase 6

    Handing Over of the Project – The finished construction of the biogas energy power generation plant will be handed over to the Arsi Negelle town municipality.

  • Phase 7

    Operation and maintenance – This is the final phase of the project, where the Arsi Negelle town municipalities and other concerned stakeholders will continue to operate and maintain the biogas energy power plant accordingly. This project follows the circular economic model, where the operation and maintenance of this power plant will be self-financed by the revenue generated from the electric energy and organic fertilizers sold to beneficiaries at an affordable cost.

Current Stage

Concept Stage: Specific projects are identified and conceptualized. There exists a basic economic model.



Project Milestones


ESG Impact

This project intends to sustainably alleviate the poor cattle waste management in Negelle Arsi town. Arsi Negelle town is renowned in Ethiopia for its production of traditional alcoholic beverage called ‘Areke’. ‘Areke’ is produced in about 60% of households in Arsi Negelle town. The production of ‘Areke’ involves a distillation process resulting in a colorless alcoholic liquid as a main product and a semi liquid residue byproduct. With the intention of maximizing their benefits, alcohol producers practice cattle fattening in their backyards using the residue byproduct as the main ingredient of their cattle feed. Consequently, the cattle-slurry waste from the fattening farms is released into the town open ditches/waterways unsafely. The cattle manure in addition to creating discomfort and health side-effects among the town residents; it has a bigger effect on the downstream village communities, which barely have alternative water sources. On top of that, as Negelle Arsi town is surrounded by three Ethiopian Central Rift Valley Lakes, the animal waste loaded streams flowing towards those lakes cause other problems such as eutrophication and siltation, adversely affecting the sustainability of the ecosystem. In Negelle Arsi town about 75 % of households have an average of 5(five) cattles per household. This project aims to use the animal manure gathered from the households as a raw material for the Biogas energy generation. This will have a diversified benefit for the Negelle Arsi town community. (1) It will create employment for the town youths collecting the animal manure waste from the households and delivering it to the biogas energy generation site. (2) It will significantly improve the sanitation condition of the town creating a healthy environment to the residents. (3) Generates financial revenues by selling the biogas energy to households (4) Mitigates the greenhouse gas emission from the animal manure in the households and disposed in the landfills (5) Prevents the release of animal waste into the waterways, minimizing the pollution of surrounding rift valley lakes (6) Helps the rural community to get electricity at an affordable cost (7) Makes the town an attractive destination for tourists and investors (8) The Biogas energy power plant in Negelle Arsi town, will become a learning hub for interested institutions.


Primarily the whole population of the Negelle Arsi town and its surrounding (estimated population to be 200,000) will benefit from the healthy and clean environment due to the safe management of the cattle waste. In Negelle Arsi town there are an estimated households of 30,000, of which 18,000 households practice cattle ranching in their compound (3 cattles per household). There are approximately 54,000 head of cattles in total in Negelle Arsi town. If we assume 5 kg of dung is collected from one cattle per day and 10 kg of dung is required to produce 1 kw of electricity, this means we could produce 27,000 kw of electricity per day. With a monthly 100 kwh of electricity domestic consumption per household, this biogas energy plant has the potential to power up 8100 households, with the electricity sold at an affordable cost. There would be a temporary and permanent employment opportunities created from the construction stage until the operation and maintenance phases. We expect a maximum total of 100 employees would join the workforce. For the collection and transportation of dung from the households to the biogas station, the producers will be charged a reasonable fee per the amount of dung monthly. This will help to build a circular economy where the biogas project will be a self financing and sustaining project in the long run. In addition, the organic fertilizer byproduct from the biogas energy power generation plant would be sold to the local farmers, which will enhance their agricultural productivity and environmental sustainability.

SDG Goals

SDG 1: No PovertySDG 2: Zero HungerSDG 3: Good Health and Well-beingSDG 4: Quality EducationSDG 5: Gender EqualitySDG 6: Clean Water and SanitationSDG 7: Affordable and Clean EnergySDG 8: Decent Work and Economic GrowthSDG 9: Industry, Innovation and InfrastructureSDG 10: Reduced InequalitySDG 11: Sustainable Cities and CommunitiesSDG 12: Responsible Consumption and ProductionSDG 13: Climate ActionSDG 14: Life Below WaterSDG 15: Life on LandSDG 16: Peace and Justice Strong InstitutionsSDG 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goals


SDG 2 – Zero Hunger

The use of organic fertilizer byproducts of the biogas power plant will help to achieve a sustainable agricultural production by improving land and soil quality (Target 2.4).


SDG 3 – Good Health and Wellbeing

The cattle fattening, accumulation of the dungs and alcohol production takes place in a small compound of a maximum 200 square meter per household. There is a high probability for the accumulated waste in these compounds infecting the food and water the family member consumes, which have undesired health consequences. The biogas power plant using cattle waste as a substrate, avoiding accumulation of the waste for extended period in the compound and creates a health environment (Target 3.9). In addition, the unpleasant smell which emanates from the open disposal of the animal waste causes a breathing health problem among the Negelle Arsi town residents, which could be prevented by the safe management of the cattle waste by the biogas power plant.


SDG 5 – Gender Equality

Women are exclusively responsible for the production of the traditional alcohol, feeding of the cattles and other domestic activities in Negelle Arsi. This means the women are under a direct exposure of the cattle waste, in an unclean and inefficient working environment. The introduction of this biogas power plant infrastructure will create a conducive, clean and improved working environment for the women (Target 5.4).


SDG 6 – Clean Water and Sanitation

The unsafe discharging of the cattle slurry into the waterways which subsequently joins the streams and the rift valley lakes (Shalla and Langano lakes) also affecting the downstream communities, which could be tackled by the biogas power plant protecting the water ecosystem (Target 6.3 and 6.6).


SDG 7 – Affordable and Clean Energy

The biogas power plant will generate energy, which enhances the access to electricity for approximately 8000 households at an affordable cost.


SDG 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth

There is a value added to the cattle waste in Negelle Arsi town by the energy generated and organic fertilizer produced by the technologically innovative biogas power plant (Target 8.2). There will also be a revenue generated from the biogas power plant, where economic growth is achieved with minimum environmental degradation (Target 8.4). There will also be a job created for the town residents (youth, women and men).


SDG 9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

This biogas power plant to be built in Negelle Arsi town meets the targets of the SDG 9 as it is going to be an environmentally sustainable, resilient and innovative infrastructure.


SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities

This project involves upgrading of cattle waste turning Negelle Arsi a sustainable, resilient and safe town. As the biogas power plant has a multidimensional benefit, an integrated planning and harmonized effort will be required for its implementation from various concerned stakeholders.


SDG 12 -Responsible Consumption and Production

The reuse of the cattle waste for an alternative energy generation and organic fertilizer production promotes sustainable production and consumption of resources.


SDG 13 – Climate Action

As methane is a greenhouse gas emitted from the open disposal of cattle waste, the reuse of the dung in the biogas plant will mitigate the impact of methane in climate change.


SDG 14 – Life Below Water

The cattle manure slurry released into the waterways of Negelle Arsi town has an unprecedented impact on the nearby water ecosystem, namely the Ethiopian Central Rift Valley Lakes of Shalla and Langano, which also affects the aquatic life existing in those lakes. The use of the cattle dung as a substrate for the biogas plant, would help in the conservation of marine resources in the vicinity of Negelle Arsi town.


SDG 15 – Life on Land

Firewood and charcoal are the main energy sources used for domestic activities, such as cooking and heating, in Negelle Arsi town. This has a ramification on terrestrial natural resource, i.e forest. The electricity generated by the biogas energy plant would reduce the exclusive dependency of households on the use of fire wood as energy source. Moreover, the use of organic fertilizers produced by the biogas plant would alleviate the land degradation (soil acidification) that could be caused by the use of inorganic industrial fertilizers otherwise.


SDG 16 – Peace and Justice Strong Institutions

In Negelle Arsi town there are two dominant ethnic groups : Oromo and Amhara. The Amharas are mainly responsible in the traditional alcohol production and cattle fattening in their compounds. The Oromos surrounding the Negelle Arsi town are farmers who supply the maize, which is the main ingredient for the alcohol production. Negelle Arsi is located in the Oromia region of Ethiopia (governed by Oromos). Even though Oromos supply the alcohol ingredient or use the byproduct of the traditional alcohol for cattle fattening, they blame the Amharas (migrated from Amhara region) as the causes for the cattle waste pollution in Negelle Arsi town, caused by the intensive cattle ranching practiced in the town using the alcohol byproduct as the main feed for the cattle. The construction of this biogas plant will resolve the dormant dispute existing among those major ethnic groups in Negelle Arsi town, as the cattle waste becomes an energy and organic fertilizer source rather than source of pollution or conflict.


SDG 17 – Partnerships to achieve the Goals

This project aims to leverage global partnership to build the biogas energy power plant. The Negelle Arsi town municipality considers the UN habitat a potential platform to secure long lasting partnerships, financial funding and technical support for this investment.

Risks and Limitations

What are the key risks, constraints and dependencies related to the project?

1. A biogas power plant at this scale and at a municipality level is the first of its kind in Ethiopia, the limited experience and unavailability of skilled manpower might affect the performance of this project. However, with a close technical supervision and capacity building training from high level experts, with specialization in biogas power plant construction, this risk could be managed.
2. Completion of the biogas power plant generation might be delayed due to lack of foreign currency, which will in turn affects the procurement of necessary equipment.
3. The political instability happening sporadically in Ethiopia might hinder the progress of the project at the required pace.

Risk mitigation and continuity

This biogas project aims to solve a real life problem existing in the Negelle Arsi town community. It is not initiated by any political motives, so it will not be used as a means to build the images of political parties. An awareness creation among the Negelle Arsi town community will be undertaken, to create a sustainable sense of ownership.


Type of Investment


Financing Structure

Public Private Partnership

Secured Investment

US $30,000 by the Negelle Arsi town municipality and Health protection bureau

Committed Government Funding


National and Subnational Investors


Committed Private Funding



Technical Support Required

Technical support is mandatory in implementation of this project. Procurement of the necessary components of the Biogas plant (those not available in the local market) requires a guidance from global experts in the Biogas development. In addition, the local engineers might require assistance in designing and installation of the Biogas energy generation plant. An experience sharing visit to an existing biogas power plant elsewhere would also be helpful in this aspect.


Governmental Buy-in

Yes. National Level, Subnational/regional level

Other Forms of Governmental Support

The government will provided educated manpower.

National Ministries Involved

National Ministry of energy , Environment, Climate, Forest commission

SubNational Ministries Involved

Oromia region bureau of urban planning, West Arsi Zone urban planning office, Adama Science and Technology University

Other Entities Involved

Negelle Arsi town municipality , Negelle Arsi town energy bureau , Negelle Arsi Woreda Health protection Bureau

Licenses and Permits



  • 10th February 2020

    Cities Investment Platform in progress - updates pending

  • 10th February 2020

    Project featured on the Cities Investment Platform, which was launched at the Tenth Session of the World Urban Forum (WUF10)

Supporting Documents

No supporting documents included.



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