Welcome to the Biogas Education Hub

Learn the practical application of home-scale biogas. Then, if you wish, get certified to teach it!

Not Currently Available for Purchase

Enrollment for the "Succeed with Home-Scale Biogas" is OPEN!


Join a growing, worldwide network

of people who are generating their own free energy out of trash, while also helping our climate.  We are doing this at home, in our community centers, on our homesteads, in rural areas and in cities. 

Basically, everywhere!

Who this is for

Are you new to biogas?  The "Succeed with Home-Scale Biogas" Program is full of easily accessible and fun lessons that will show you all you need to know to design, build, and take care of your biogas system. Anyone can take this course.

If you get all fired up about biogas and want to teach my innovative curriculum in your community in a way that is engaging and relevant to your culture and context, The "Biogas Educator Certificate Program" is for you. You will learn my proven participatory design and teaching approach, and receive a license to use my "done for you" curriculum, so you can get right to teaching. This course will open later in 2022. 

Other courses that deepen your knowledge and application of biogas will also be coming online.

People who enroll in courses become members of the Biogas Education Hub.


Your Host:  Kathy Puffer

I'm all about accessible, practical applications of biogas. 

I operate my own biogas system in my homestead and use it to cook, and the fertilizer to grow vegetables hydroponically that I sell in a CSA. 

I am a professional educator who is on a mission to take dry technical biogas trainings and make them engaging and relevant for your context, so that they become systems that work for you, and our living planet over the long-term. 

I also present and consult about biogas, permaculture, and more. Learn more about me at kathypuffer.com


The "Succeed With Small-Scale Biogas" Program

will be opening for registration for the first time on Dec 17!

The course and community is the culmination of key insights from Kathy Puffer's many years of practical experience as a designer, user, and teacher of small-scale biogas solutions; so it's already damn good. 

Enrollment will be open for a small cohort of 20 people who want early access. These beta-testers will get extra attention from Kathy so that she can hear from you how to make the program even better. In exchange for your feedback, you pay the lowest price of $100 (a 30% discount). 

Through March 2022, attend Kathy's LIVE "Office Hours" on Thursday evenings at 7pm to get real answers to your questions, so you feel confident applying what you learn.

The course includes a year of membership in the Hub Network where you get 24/7 access to a community of other small-scale biogas enthusiasts and special events.

Enrollment is open Dec 17-24, and the first module opens on Dec 27. Modules are released weekly thereafter.

Click on the course description at the bottom of this page read all more details and sign up. 

Why this course?

  • Other courses are overly technical. The goal of this course is for you to feel confident in designing, building, operating, and maintaining a small-scale biogas system.

  • Other courses require you to pass a test, but we don't. Because the teacher, Kathy Puffer, generates and uses biogas daily, she knows that success = a working system that works for you.

  • Other courses are tied to a particular biogas system, I help you evaluate systems so you can choose the system that works best for your unique situation.

  • Other courses sell you the technological know-how about a biogas system. Instead, as a permaculture teacher and designer, I show you how to design your biogas system for your unique context, and integrate it into other Whole Systems design. 

  • Other courses treat all end-users the same. In my field experience, I’ve seen systems designed so they are too tall for the petite person feeding the system, or built without adequate training for long-term success. As a woman, mother, busy professional who uses biogas in my daily life, and as an educator who specializes in designing hacks for folks who are differently abled, I help you design your system with ergonomics, lifestyle, and local resources in mind.

Will this course work for my context? 

The course is designed to teach you the foundations of biogas, whether you  

  • live in a cold, temperate, or tropical climate
  • live in an urban, suburban, or rural setting
  • live in the United States or other "industrialized" nation
  • live in a Global Majority nation
  • know how to use tools, or are a beginner
  • have financial resources, or you are rich in other ways

If you want to build a small-scale system for your home, homestead, or community, you will feel well-resourced in this community and course.

If you want to build an industrial-scale biogas system, this isn't the course for you. I believe that the many benefits from small-scale biogas multiplied in many homes and communities become a powerful virtuous feedback loop that leads towards resilience while also addressing large-scale issues, like climate mitigation and adaptation, so that's my focus.

What will I learn?

Here's an overview of the info-packed, engaging modules in the syllabus:

  • Why cooking on homemade fuel is "a gas" - I unpack all the reasons why generating your own biogas saves you money, turns trash into treasure, and benefits our climate.
  • Meet the "critters" (the microbes that create biogas) -  You wouldn't have a herd of cow in your yard and expect them to fend for themselves, as they require care and feeding! Biogas systems work best when the people maintaining them understand that they are working with a "living system." In this module, I show you to think of your biogas digester as the home to a "microbe-herd" and how to keep them happy and producing lots of useful gas.  
  • Build the perfect home for your microbe-herd - A biodigester in any context has some universal design aspects that you need to know about so that your system works well over the long run. Here we cover types of digesters, and general considerations for materials, siting, sizing, and keeping your critters warm and thriving. 
  • Detailed design considerations for your specific site - Here is where we take those general ideas that you've learned and apply them to your context. I show you how to decide if you want to buy or build a digester, we calculate the perfect size system for your needs, identify site preparation before you install the system, customize design for the people using the system, how to choose your gas collection design, and ways to make sure your biogas efforts won't get you in hot water with neighbors or authorities.  You also learn about the right "diet" for maximum gas production. 
  • Biogas safety - Maybe you've heard biogas isn't safe to use... we debunk the myths, and I show you how to think about biogas safety beyond just flammability. I'm a mom and my kids have grown up around our biogas systems, so I've thought a lot about this. 
  • Starting your system - Once you design and build your digester, then you need to introduce your microbe-herd and help them multiply. There are some tricks to helping this go well, and I share mine so you don't have to make mistakes or wait forever to start cooking with gas. Also, since I have a Whole Systems Design approach, I help you identify the perfect "recipes" for feeding your microbe-herd from materials you have at hand.
  • When your microbe-herd isn't happy - Since each system is a unique design and context, often there are tweaks that need to be made, or user mistakes that crop up. I help you troubleshoot the most common issues. We can also talk about your particular challenges in my "Office Hours."
  • The many ways to use biogas - Biogas is not only for cooking. We talk about the many ways you can convert it into energy, and how to decide what approaches sense.
  • Bioslurry is gold! - Many folks don't realize that a wonderful by-product of a biogas system is a liquid fertilizer that can be used for many purposes, so I give you an overview of practical applications I've seen and worked with.
  • Temperate / cold climates: season extension and winterizing - Your microbe herd likes to be warm, so in cooler climates, you need to think about how to keep it happy without consuming fossil fuels; and how cooler temps bring additional challenges. I show you an overview of the main things to consider for the design and operation of your system. 

In the future, I'll have additional courses for purchase after you master the Foundations of Biogas:


How I generate income through selling vegetables that I grow in a hydroponics system using bioslurry from my biodigester. 

Buying / Building stoves - There are many "hacks" for biogas stoves that I couldn't fit into the already packed "Foundations" course, but in this mini-course, I show you everything I've learned and macgyvered in many contexts in many countries. 

Community-based solutions - I've worked in places where a biodigester makes the most sense as a community endeavor. Participatory design is a unique challenge, but if done well, creates fantastic outcomes. The skills developed also enable the community to best navigate operating a biogas system and it's income-producing enterprises together.  This course will be FREE to people in global majority nations with financial challenges, and/or people to whom reparations are owed in industrialized nations.

Biogas and sanitation for human health and wellbeing - Biogas can be generated from animal waste, so combining digesters with human toilet systems is a no-brainer. We talk about how this can be done in ways to prevent disease and increase the health of humans, our watersheds, our soil, and more. 

Biogas Educator Certificate Program - Teach my innovative curriculum in your community in a way that is engaging and relevant to your culture and context.  You will learn my proven participatory design and teaching approach, and receive a license to use my "done for you" curriculum, so you can get right to teaching. This course will open later in 2022. 

Are you in?

Click on the plan below for even more details. AND pro-tip... payments on iPhones are higher, so that's the price difference you will see below. Or, enroll when you are on your computer

If you live in New York state, please use the "NY State" payment option, which includes sales tax.

Also, regardless of the smartphone you use, it works best to first set up your account and password via a browser, then text yourself the app.

 

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