Our partners

Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI)

Empower Village is partnering with the University of Minnesota-Duluth’s Natural Resource Research Institute (NRRI). The NRRI is studying sustainable fuel sources, including bio-charcoal. 

Taking the lead

The NRRI developed a system to turn bio-mass into fuel utilizing a technology known as torrefaction. This process creates charcoal briquettes using a process akin to roasting coffee. 


Initial research used an invasive form of “cattail" found in Mauritania as a source material. Empower Village and NRRI believe similar high quality bio-charcoal can be produced with biomass materials found in Burkina Faso.  

Learn more on the NRRI site