Biomass - pros & cons


Unlike some other forms of renewable power such as wind or hydro, biomass can produce constant and stable electricity which is not subject to the elements. This is essential for the electricity network to provide power to all its users. Biomass power generation can save up to 80% more CO2 than coal or gas fired power stations and as there will be a number of coal-fired power stations closing in near future it is essential these are replaced with clean, modern, low carbon power stations that can operate 24 hours a day 365 days a year.
Biomass energy plant :
Wate to energy plant :

Anaerobic digestion
It is a series of processes in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen, used for industrial or domestic purposes to manage waste and/or to release energy. The process produces a biogas, comprising of methane and carbon dioxide. This biogas can be used directly as cooking fuel, in combined heat and power gas engines[3] or upgraded to natural gas quality biomethane.

Wate Heat to Energy
the University of Arizona finds a new ways to harvest energy through heat. Advantages: elimination of Ozone Depleting materials. The heat-conversion device invented by Bergfield and Stafford do not require any kind of machines or ozone-depleting chemicals, which were earlier used to convert waste into electric energy. Now, the same work is done by sandwiching a rubber-like polymer between two metals, which acts like an electrode. The thermoelectric devices are self-contained, need no moving parts and are easy to manufacture and maintain. Energy is harvested in many ways using the car and factory waste. Car and factory waste can be used for generating electricity by coating exhaust pipes with a thin material, which is a millionth time of an inch. Molecular thermoelectric devices may help in harvesting energy from the sun and reduce the dependence on photovoltic cells, whose efficiency in harvesting solar energy is going down.

Waste to Energy plant
A joint venture between Reform Energy plc and Wyre Waste Recycling Ltd has submitted plans for a £40 million waste to energy facility in Fleetwood, Lancashire. According to the partners, the combined heat and power (CHP) technology has been developed and used extensively in Europe to recover the energy from material generated during the waste recycling process. "The UK is currently struggling with two key issues; too much waste going to landfill, and not enough energy resources. Reform Energy has developed a single solution that will have a significant impact on both problems," he added.

Recycling methane gas from landfill into energy - BMW experience
25 % of the energy needs - electricity and heating


Despite being an attractive technological option for waste management, combustion-based processes for municipal solid waste (MSW) treatment are a subject of intense debate around the world. The adoption of alternative cleaner methods for the disposal of municipal garbage is necessary. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), incinerators are the leading source of dioxin into the global environment. The EPA, in a recent study, identified dioxins as the cause of many cancers. An integrated solid waste management (ISWM) is essential to establish a waste hierarchy to identify the key elements. The general hierarchy should be comprised of the following order:
1. Reduce
2. Reuse
3. Recycle
4. Waste minimization and recovery of energy from waste by composting, anaerobic digestion, incineration etc.
5. Landfilling

The cost of building and operating incinerators or providing special landfill sites is enormous. If substantial parts of these funds were to be diverted towards waste minimisation and encouraging recycling, the need for waste disposal could be enormously reduced, apart from reducing the dangers which arise from both incineration and landfill.

Posted by etienne mares / 11.4 years ago / 4659 hits