Akansha – beacon light in rural India
When Akansha Singh was working in the villages of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar right after graduating from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, she realised that one of the biggest problems in the rural areas was a lack of electricity. This led to many unproductive hours for the villagers after sundown since nothing could be accomplished in the darkness.
It was then that she struck upon the idea of using waste as a source of renewable energy. She founded a company called Swayambhu Innovative Systems that provides bio energy to the remote areas of India. She does this by linking a community to a Community Biogas Plant(CBP) that makes use of the waste generated from domestic/kitchen, livestock and farms on a mass scale to produce biogas. This leads to the production of electricity and other by-products like organic manure and bio-pesticide.
According to her, 95 per cent of the bio-degradable waste that is produced by rural communities can be converted to bioenergy that fulfils the basic needs of the rural population. This model not just makes use of untreated organic waste but also reduces the dependency on non-renewable and traditional means of fuel.
Singh’s firm is now constructing a plant of 150m3 capacity suited for the Ganga basin area of Bihar. The plant can produce electricity of 100 KW per day and can help 100 farmers irrigate at least 200 acres of land.