By Jimmy Siyasa
Uganda Christian University (UCU) has received a grant of €53,000 from the Innovation Fund for Development (IFD) to support a major green energy project. The project, which will be led by Professor William Kisaalita, a visiting professor at UCU, aims to tackle climate change by replacing natural charcoal with long-lasting, eco-friendly briquettes made from bamboo.
Purpose of project
The project will involve conducting a technical feasibility study in educational institutions’ kitchens and addressing knowledge gaps on the use of “green” bamboo charcoal and firewood. The researchers hope to build the value chain of bamboo-based energy sources in Uganda, a country where bamboo grows naturally in different regions.
Bamboo has not been fully explored for high-value chains such as energy and fabrics, despite its potential to contribute significantly to soil and water conservation, biodiversity conservation, climate change mitigation, and the green economy. The researchers believe that bamboo’s environmental sustainability, coupled with its potential to store more carbon than many other tree species, make it an ideal raw material for eco-friendly briquettes.
The UCU Sustainable Development Center
The project will be conducted under the auspices of the UCU Sustainable Development Center (SDC), which was launched in 2022 to leverage current strengths at the intersection of water, energy, and food/feed. By replacing natural charcoal with bamboo-based briquettes, the researchers hope to reduce Uganda’s carbon footprint and contribute to a more sustainable future.
In conclusion, this green energy project is a significant step towards addressing the challenge of climate change in Uganda and globally. With the support of the IFD and the expertise of UCU researchers, it is hoped that the project will contribute to the development of a more sustainable energy industry in Uganda and beyond.