Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO) first introduced biogas in Tanzania in 1975.The Centre for Agriculture Mechanization and Rural Technology (CAMARTEC) in collaboration with the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) took over major responsibility for biogas activities from SIDO in 1983 and served the function to other parts of the country. Up to 1992, only 600 plants national-wide had been installed.
In 2009, the Africa Biogas Partnership Program was initiated in Tanzania as a private public partnership, and the Tanzania Domestic Biogas Program (TDBP) was born hosted by CAMARTEC. During phase 1 (2009-2013) the programme constructed 8,799 biogas plants against a target of 12,000 in the country. The programme celebrated the inauguration of its 10,000th biogas plants on the 10th September 2014. The second phase (2014-17) of the programme aims to build further on the foundations of the first phase targeting to install 20,700 biodigesters.
An extensive partner network has made it possible to reach disparate regions and rural communities therefore enhancing programme implementation. Sixteen implementing partners and collaborators are coordinating biogas activities in their respective regions and communities. The Modified CAMARTEC Design (MCD) Fixed Dome model is the most preferred plant model in Tanzania. The two types of the MCD fixed dome available are: the disseminated-Diluted State Digester (DSD) where water is available and the Solid State Digester (SSD) where water is at a premium or scarce. New designs such as the prefabricated SIMGAS, Gesi Shamba fixed dome digesters (6m3) are entering the market. SIMGAS is a large biogas company operating in the city of Dar es Salaam.
Initially, most Tanzanian farmers took an interest in biogas primarily as a source of cheap and clean fuel, and the provision of organic fertiliser. The programme builds the capacity of biogas users to benefit from the full range of biogas technology through various training sessions. Use of bio-slurry has seen improvements in agriculture production and provided savings thanks to the reduction of purchases of chemical fertilizers, thereby increasing household incomes levels. To this end bio-slurry has become a significant selling point of biogas plants. For more information about TDBP please visit http://www.biogas-tanzania.org/index.php