Youth and Sports Minister Saah Charles N’Tow is impressed with the work the Chinese team implementing the China-aided Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS) run Bamboo & Rattan Weaving and Vegetable Production Training Program (BRWVPTP) is doing in Liberia.
Minister N’Tow expressed his pleasure this week when he led MYS Deputy Minister for Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Rufus D. Neufville to assess the level of work now done by the team on the construction of structures for a biogas production plant and a greenhouse at the Klay Agriculture Vocational Training Center (KAVTC) in Klay District, Bomi County.
The team has completed building a 2000-square-meter vegetable green house that will produce crops all year-round, while a piggery to house livestock whose manures will be utilized in producing biogas is almost completed.
Inside the greenhouse is being prepared for seedling beds. For the renewable energy plant, a number of septic tanks, including a 60-meter reservoir are completed.
According to BRWVPTP Director Nei Yongdou, both the greenhouse and biogas system will be utilized for production and teaching, which he said will begin during the next training cycle of KAVTC, expected to begin shortly.
“The work you’re doing at this center is excellent,” said Minister N’Tow as he toured the facilities.
He emphasized that agriculture is a focus area of the Liberian Government because it has the highest employment potential in Liberia.
“We want to exploit all the possibilities of the greenhouse and biogas technologies and get our youth excited about agriculture,” he stressed.
“I am satisfied that students will not only use the products of the facilities, but will also learn to use them, produce them and teach others about them.”
Through his interpreter, BRWVPTP Director Nei reiterated his earlier pledge that he and his team would cooperate with the management of KAVTC to “promote” the use and production of the energy to other parts of Liberia, as well produce quality agriculture workers.
The 2000 square-meter vegetable greenhouse is built with steel pipes and plastic sheeting. Nei promised he and his team will teach students at KAVTC and other Liberians to build greenhouses using bamboo materials.
The Chinese team will also plant citrus fruits and participate in the teaching of general agriculture at KAVTC: vegetable, food, and tree crop production, as well as animal husbandry, including piggery, poultry and fishery.
Particularly in cool climates, a greenhouse is useful for growing and propagating plants because it both allows sunlight to enter and prevent heat from escaping, according to experts.
The transparent covering of the greenhouse allows visible light to enter unhindered, where it warms the interior as it is absorbed by the material within.
As for biogas, chemists say it is a mixture of different gases produced by the breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen. They say biogas can be produced from raw materials such as agricultural waste, manure, municipal waste, plant materials, sewage, green waste or food waste.
According to the experts, biogas can be produced by anaerobic digestion with anaerobic organisms which digest material inside a closed system, or fermentation of biodegradable materials.