By Willy Chowoo
An innovative and enterprising young man in Gulu district has started manufacturing briquette as an alternative source of energy for people in Gulu district. Wokorach Moses-a Biomass Energy Technologist is the innovator and the Founder of Dual Energy Alternative Company Limited. He started this innovation in late December 2018 with the core goal of conserving the environment by offering a cheaper source of energy.
Since of December when he started the company, he has managed to produce one ton of briquettes (15000 pieces). According to Wokorach, a kilogram of briquettes consists of 8 pieces which is sold at sh800 and 3 pieces is enough to cook for one evening.
“Briquette is cheap, does not produce a lot of smoke, and can be afforded by many, so every citizen need to embrace this innovation to help solve the problem of energy source in the country”, he adds.
According to World Bank, only 26.7% of Ugandans are able to access electricity and this leaves urban residents to use charcoal as alternative energy source and besides 77% of Ugandans who live in the rural areas use firewood for cooking and this has made the dependency on firewood as a source of energy straining the environment.
According to Uganda Energy Balance, the energy demand in residential areas is the highest at 67.1% compared to electricity which is as low as 24.2% which translates that majority of Ugandans cannot afford tariffs for electricity. And the energy demand at industry sector is only 11.9% whereas the electricity demand is at 64.6% which means that electricity in Uganda is consumed mostly by industries.
A report by Uganda Bureau of Statistic UBS -90% of the urban residents in Uganda use charcoal as their source of energy. A study done by Centre of African Studies in consortium with universities of Makerere, Gulu University, University of Cambridge and Human Rights Focus –Gulu, 40% of the charcoal consumed in the urban areas comes from Acholi Sub region.
Wokorach says that there is urgent need for people in northern Uganda to adopt charcoal Briquettes so as to be able to address the worrying statistic and save the region and country from becoming a desert.