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Helping cities in Brazil adopt biogas technology for sanitation and power

Biogas for cooking and electricity

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Biogas is a gaseous mixture generated during anearobic digestion processes using waste water, solid waste (e.g. at landfills), organic waste, and other sources of biomass. Biogas can be upgraded to a level compatible with natural gas (‘green gas’) by cleaning (removal of H2S, ammonia and some hydrocarbons from the biogas) and by increasing its methane share (by removing the CO2).

Clean Development Mechanism market status: 

[This information is kindly provided by the UNEP Risoe Centre Carbon Markets Group.]

The following CDM methdologies are applied for biomass gasification projects: AMS-I.D.: Grid connected renewable electricity generation AMS-III.I.: Avoidance of methane production in wastewater treatment through replacement of anaerobic systems by aerobic systems, AMS-III.H.: Methane recovery in wastewater treatment, AMS-I.A.: Electricity generation by the user and AMS-I.C.: Thermal energy production with or without electricity for small-scale projects.

As of March 2011, there are 14 biomass gasification projects in the CDM pipeline, out of which 8 are registered and for 1 project CERs have been issued.

To work with 3-5 Brazilian city governments to focus on methane recovery as a RE source, developing tools for other cities to use and policies to regulate solid waste disposal, landfills, and waste water treatment plants. 


15° 46' 46.92" S, 47° 55' 46.92" W
Main activity and output: 
  • Select 3-5 Brazilian cities from amongst the current ICLEI CCP network, to ensure senior level commitment and significant local resources. 
  • Conduct baseline scenario research
  • Create a guide on methane recovery from landfill and wastewater to generate energy, and distribute it to more than 100 local governments
  • Train at least 60 individuals on using the guide and tool kit in a workshop
  • Providing continuous follow-up and technical assistance to the cities
  • Disseminate the project activities and results via the global ICLEI network.
Expected impact: 
  • Improved urban sanitation and increased clean energy generation through methane recovery technology
  • Increased access to low-cost energy for the urban poor
  • Increased opportunities for cities to benefit from CDM revenue
  • Benchmarks established for other municipalities in energy policies
  • Integration of RE into municipal long-term planning processes
  • Enrich ICLEI’s database of case studies
  • Finance institutions and cities see sanitation expenditure as an investment rather than a cost.