Household biogas digesters or medium–large-scale biogas plants: a conflicting issue in rural China
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There has been a conflicting issue in rural China that whether or not encouraging the development of medium–large-scale biogas plants (MLBPs) to reduce household biogas digesters (HBDs) will be better for China in the long run. In this study, we investigate the difference between HBD users and MLBP users and the factors that affect the biogas use of these two user types on the basis of a survey of 1125 households in four provinces in China. The results indicate that compared to HBD users, MLBP users have a higher ratio (29%) of biogas use, obtain a higher subsidy-to-cost ratio (25%), and present a more positive evaluation of biogas service (3%). For HBD users, installation years and service evaluation are significant predictors of biogas use. For MLBP users, in addition to installation years and service, the subsidy-to-cost ratio affects biogas use negatively, and the biogas price is a key constraint for biogas use. These results provide valuable insights into the future development of biogas energy in rural China and guidance for the development of biogas in similar countries worldwide.
KeywordsBiogas energy User types Rural residents Sichuan Hubei Jiangxi Guizhou
This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 71663028 and 71963021), Jiangxi Science Planning Fund Program (Grant No. 19GL10), and 2011 Collaborative Innovation Center (JXDSSDMAAI).
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