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A reported blog about all things Middle East and North Africa.

Egypt: making gas from garbage

Hanna Fathy avoids winter butane shortages by turning trash into free cooking gas
Egypt gas garbage shortage methane butane 12 06 11Enlarge
A Palestinian man sits with cylinders of cooking gas, smuggled into the Gaza Strip from Egypt through a tunnel, that he is selling on a street in Gaza city on December 6, 2008. (MAHMUD HAMS/AFP/Getty Images)

Two Egyptians were killed and more than a dozen wounded following clashes over butane gas cylinders, which are used in many homes to cook food.

There are typically shortages of the heavily-subsidized gas during Egypt’s colder winter months.

Here’s Al-Masry Al-Youm, an independent daily newspaper in Cairo:

A 50-year-old man was killed in Assiut, and a 39-year-old in Aswan, when dozens of people intercepted two vans carrying cylinders.

In Giza, three people were wounded in a fight while customers were waiting in line for cylinders, whose price has reached LE40.

In Minya, the price hit LE55, prompting the residents to block the highway and the corniche in protest.

In Cairo, more than 16,000 smuggled cylinders were confiscated just as they were about to be sold on the black market.

A Daqahlia gas station had to close down after it was assaulted by residents looking for cylinders.

Meanwhile, one Egyptian living in the slums east of Cairo has discovered a way to create free cooking gas from garbage.

Hanna Fathy, a 28-year-old living in the Manshiet Nasr district, converts old food scraps into methane gas using a homemade storage container, a few plastic pipes, and cow dung.

Watch our video below to learn more about turning garbage into gas