Biomass Nutrient Recycling

  • About the project

    Founded in Brazil in 1993, OIA was the collaborative brainchild of anti-poverty activist Waldemar Boff, renowned chemist Prof. Michael Braungart, community entrepreneur Valmir Fachini, biological engineer Katja Hansen, and environmental manager Douglas Mulhall. OIA developed out of collaboration between the Hamburger Umweltinstitut in Germany and the Brazilian social self-help organization SEOP. It benefitted from the conceptual work of Michael Braungart, GAIA Foundation President Jose Lutzemberger, and the engineering concepts of Prof G.L.Chan of Mauritius, whose Integrated Farming System is a major component.

    Extensive research funded by the European Commission was done at the pilot facilities in the 1990s. Results are summarized in an article published in Water Environment & Technology in 1997

    A manual on how to design, build and operate biomass nutrient recycling facilities in tropical and subtropical regions was written at the end of the EU funded research period and can be found here.

    Since the late 1990s OIA has been continuing the work building many more projects in Brazil, but also in Nicaragua, Spain, the Dominican Republik and more recently in Haiti.

    The project work in Haiti is particularily interesting because the facilities were constructed before the devastating Haiti earthquake in 2010. Not only did the facilities survive the earthquake, but they were the only ones to function in the aftermath and providing sanitation in the region.

    Reuters did a short video which can be found here.

    Katja Hansen, scientific director of the project in Brazil, gave a lecture about the biomass nutrient recycling projects which is available on at C2C-Centre using this link

    Initiator of the project was HUI supported by EPEA. 


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