New partnership could benefit global waste to energy efforts

New process could enable anaerobic digestion facilities anywhere in the world to capture biogas and use it to produce renewable energy.

BioHiTech America, a subsidiary of green technology company, BioHiTech Global Inc. (which provides an innovative data-driving solution for the disposal of food waste), has partnered with Natural Systems Utilities to test a waste to energy process that will enable BioHiTech’s food waste disposal system to digest, tank and deliver the effluent from its system to anaerobic digestion facilities around the globe, reported Biomass Magazine.

BioHiTech’s energy from waste system converts foods waste to greywater.

The company’s food waste disposal system is known as the Eco-Safe Digester. It uses an anerobic digestion process to transform food waste to greywater, which is also referred to as effluent. Usually, the effluent is safely released into the sewage system and individual wastewater treatment plants, so it can be treated with other waste that is deemed sanitary.

The new process that is being tested will tank the unit’s effluent, which will allow for transportation to an anaerobic digestion plant where biogas can be captured and utilized to create clean energy.

Waste to energy - GarbageAccording to BioHiTech, what makes the Eco-Safe Digester unique is that it performs the hydrolysis stage of anaerobic digestion at the point of origin. Due to the fact that the anaerobic digestion process starts with the breakdown of solid organics to a liquid slurry, the effluent can be pumped and transported without problem, arriving at the anaerobic digestion facility in a “predigested” condition. This makes feedstock transfer more efficient and removes the need for expensive processing at the facility.

Currently, the new waste to energy process is being tested in New Jersey.

Other partners involved in the energy from waste project includes the village of Ridgewood, New Jersey, and Ridgewood Green RME, the latter of which owns a 240 kW digester biogas power plant and a 20,000 gallon-per-day liquid waste receiving facility.

A supermarket in New Jersey has been selected as a testing ground for the new process. Its waste is transported to an anaerobic digestion plant that is operated by the village of Ridgewood at its water pollution control plant.

Additionally, in December, BioHiTech installed its Eco-Safe-Digester at a second Dunkin’ Donuts location in New Jersey. Its system is helping the restaurant to save money on waste management while at the same time keeping its waste out of landfills.

Paul Knowles, director of technical operations of Natural Systems Utilities said that “Early trials to receive the material and feed it to the digester have proven successful.” Knowles added that the company is “working with BioHiTech to expand the process so that they can offer this solution to new and existing customers.”

CEO of BioHiTech Global, Fran E. Celli, also commented on the waste to energy project saying that BioHiTech has “developed a process for those who want their food waste delivered to anaerobic digesters so that it can be converted to clean energy.”

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