Leroy Mwasaru’s biodigesters have eliminated two pollution problems in one fell swoop.
In rural Kenya, pit toilets—basically holes in the ground, with no water for flushing—are the most common type of toilet. They don’t always work well. At Maseno School, a large boarding school in western Kenya, the sewer system often backed up and contaminated a nearby stream. And, of course, it didn’t smell very good either.
A teenage student at the school came up with a solution: Why not turn the sewage, along with food waste and dung from the school’s cattle, into power for the school?
“My inspiration was drawn from the pressing demand for a clean, renewable sustainable source of fuel,” says student Leroy Mwasaru, now 17. “In the African continent we have lots of resources that masquerades as ‘waste.'”