Submitted by admin on Mon, 06/06/2016 - 15:43
Two of the biggest environmental problems facing the world today are waste disposal and depletion of fossil fuels. An increasingly popular solution that solves both problems is a process that turns organic waste, such as food scraps and agricultural waste, into fuel. Microorganisms called anaerobic digesters are mixed with food and plant waste to produce bio-gas, which is a clean alternative to fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas. This waste disposal Vancouver process is similar to making compost, but the focus is on collecting gas rather than creating fertile soil.
A Fuel with Many Applications
Most people are already familiar with bio-diesel, which is produced by refining cooking oil waste from restaurants, but bio-gas has more potential for both waste management and energy production. Bio-gas can be produced from any organic waste and used for many purposes, from home heating and cooking to generating electricity at power plants. It can also be compressed like natural gas and used to power vehicles, or injected into the existing natural gas grid.
Powering Homes with Waste from Farms
The first step in the process of turning waste into energy is the waste disposal service, which picks up waste from homes, businesses and farms. Currently, there are very few services which pick up household waste for conversion to bio-gas. Many families find it inconvenient to sort their trash into multiple categories, separating paper and plastic from food scraps. City waste management programs do not want the burden of funneling trash into different services when it is easier and more cost-effective to send all waste to the landfill.
However, when it comes to agricultural waste disposal, collection for bio-gas production is thriving. Agriculture produces tons of organic matter, enough to provide power for entire cities. Everything from corn husks and plant stems to manure from livestock must be dealt with by farms of all sizes. Almost all of the waste from a farm is organic matter, so sorting through waste is not an issue. Plus, many bio-gas collection services pick up agricultural waste for free or at a lower cost than other agricultural waste disposal services, making it an attractive option for farmers.
The Future of Waste-to-Energy Technology
As alternative energy becomes more essential due to a dwindling supply of fossil fuels, bio-gas and other sources of energy derived from waste products will become more common. Some cities are moving forward with waste-to-energy programs as an alternative to landfills. Small-scale options are being developed which have the potential for enabling schools, hospitals and homes to turn their organic waste directly into energy. A future where today's leftover dinner becomes tomorrow's hot shower or pot of coffee may not be too far away.