Total savings :1st phase: approx. 350 tCO2/year - 2nd phase: approx. 10,000 tCO2/year
Technology transfer :Gasification of coconut wood for heat and power generation
Knowledge transfer :Avoidance of diesel combustion, promotion of sustainable agriculture
Further advantages :Local value creation, creation of jobs
Project partners :Kisiwa Farming Limited (KFL)

A modern biomass gasifier plant on the Tanzanian island of Mafia generates electricity and heat from coconut wood residues. It replaces electricity generated from diesel and at the same time promotes sustainable agriculture and local value creation.

The island of Mafia off the coast of Tanzania with its 60,000 inhabitants is characterised by fishing, tourism and agriculture. Around the time of German colonial rule, the first coconut plantations were established here. Unlike nearby Zanzibar, which is much better known among international tourists, Mafia has no connection to the Tanzanian mainland’s electricity grid. Instead, the Tanzanian national energy company TANESCO operates a mini-grid here that is powered by diesel generators.

In 2014, the company Ngombeni Power Limited made a first attempt at generating renewable electricity for the grid by installing a biomass combustion plant powered by wood residues from a coconut plantation. Due to technical and operational problems, however, the plant was shut down after only a short period of operation.

In the meantime, the company Kisiwa Farming Limited, founded by South African chemical engineer Darius Boshoff, has taken over operations on the coconut plantations and made a fresh start. Besides producing a variety of coconut products KFL wants to regenerate and rejuvenate the 2700 ha of coconut plantations. Coconut palms that are more than 70 years old and no longer bear fruit will be replaced by young trees. The old trees will be processed into coco timber where the resulting wood waste will be used to generate electricity and heat.

With the help of atmosfair’s financing, KFL will lay the foundation for this renewable energy production in spring 2021, in the form of a 49kW combined heat and power plant with a wood gasifier from German company Spanner Re2. With up to 8000 operating hours per year, the plant will supply 392 MWh of electricity as well as 890 MWh of heat annually. While the heat is used to dry the timber, the electricity is used for coconut processing and made available to the connected households via the mini-grid.

After the successful commissioning of the first plant, atmosfair and KFL intend to expand the cogeneration plant step by step. For the next phase, an increase in capacity to 1.4 MW is planned.

Our partner

Our partner Kisiwa Farming Limited (KFL) is a Tanzanian social enterprise that aims to combine sustainable coconut cultivation with renewable electricity production on Mafia Island. KFL was founded by Darius Boshoff, who has already implemented numerous energy projects on the African continent with his engineering company Energidrop (Pty) Ltd.

Although KFL is still a young company, it already has 30 employees, the majority of whom are from Mafia. The gradual expansion of the project is expected to create more local jobs over the next few years.

Your contact at atmosfair

Annika Richter
Regional Manager East Africa
M.Sc. Sustainable Energy Engineering
+49 (0) 30 120 84 80 - 63