Bristol Energy taps ‘poo bus’ creators to run city on sewage

Residents of Bristol could soon be cooking their evening meal using energy produced from poo, thanks to a new partnership announced yesterday between local utility Bristol Energy and anaerobic digestion experts GENeco.

GENeco, the company behind the UK’s first bio-bus powered by sewage and liquid organic waste, is now supplying Bristol Energy with biomethane from sewage waste collected from the homes of a million people in the local area.

“People are much more aware of the simple changes we can make to tackle climate change,” explained Bristol Energy’s renewables and origination manager Simon Procter. “But for a long time green energy was seen as more expensive. Luckily, thanks to advances in technology, this is no longer the case. It’s amazing what science can do with your poo.”

To produce biogas, the sewage collected from homes is treated and turned into a sludge, which them goes through a process of anaerobic digestion to create biogas. The gas is then cleaned and upgraded to a composition identical to methane, before being piped into the national energy grid.

GENeco now treats 75,000,000m3 of sewage waste every year, enough to power more than 8,000 homes with green gas. Customers who sign up to Bristol Energy’s My Green Plus tariff will receive 15 per cent green gas and 100 per cent green electricity, compared to a national average of 0.1 per cent.

As well as using sewage to create green gas, GENeco also collects food waste as feedstock. Last October GENeco launched the first vehicle in the UK to both collect and run on commercial food waste. The Bio-Bee truck collects food waste and takes it to GENeco’s anaerobic digestion plant, where the waste is processed to remove any plastic and then turned into low carbon biogas.

SOURCE: Business Green