SF-BioVac - HEP Zambia: Sustainable Futures - Biogas Value Chain for Circular Economy Competence Growth for Zambia


Period: 23.11.2023 - 31.8.2026

Content: The Sustainable Futures- Biogas Value Chain for Circular Economy Competence
Growth in Zambia (SF-BioVaC) Project aims at contributing to “High-quality,
inclusive and working life relevant higher education in Zambia to support
sustainable development and the transition towards a circular economy with
biogas as an alternative form of energy”.  This is achieved by building
capacity in the partner HEIs through theoretical and practical training in
circular economy (CE) in the waste-to-energy sector in Zambia with focus on
biogas. This cooperation is both the result and continuation of an already
existing cooperation between Novia UAS, UNZA and CBU, with University of Oulu
as a new member to the consortium. The project also closely works with key
stakeholders such as the Rural Electrification Authority of Zambia as a
non-academic partner and project activities will involve industry in both

Zambia is currently facing a big challenge in managing waste as it affects both
environment and the well-being of the population, especially the most
vulnerable ones as they are often the ones who suffer from bad waste
management. Zambia’s government has indicated the political will to solve the
waste problem and is eager to support cooperations such as this. Furthermore,
Zambia has an electricity capacity shortfall of 165 MW, and the country
produces a considerable amount of biowaste coming from the agricultural,
farming and food processing industry to mention a few. Biogas has the potential
to produce energy hence cutting dependency on fossil fuels and can be an
off-grid system, extending its applicability to rural areas. Additionally,
there is potential to produce local biofertilizer (digestate) from available
municipal organic waste and livestock manure from commercial facilities that
would meet a significant share of the country’s fertilizer demand. 

The partners in this project build capacities within the biogas value chain and
introduce sustainable business models and circular design to contribute to
solving some of the challenges mentioned above. The project contributes to
increasing the institutional capacity of the HEIs in CE to be able provide a
work-life relevant education, to improve students’ and teachers' applied
research skills and strengthen the university-industry collaboration, widening
the awareness of CE and its potential.  

Whilst the focus is on Zambia, HEIs in both Finland and Zambia benefit from the
project, as it creates competence growth in sustainability and circular economy
from a global perspective.  

Focus area: Hållbar energiteknik

Campus: Vasa Wolffskavägen 33

Financers: Utrikesministeriet

Project owner: Novia UAS

Project manager: Cynthia Söderbacka

Partners: University of Oulu, UNZA Zambia, CBU Zambia