Curry to Kilowatts

Food-to-energy schemes are fairly common around the globe. In the U.S., however, there are few anaerobic digesters that break down food waste and harness the gas released to power a generator. 

The latest story to cross my desk is a company called Biotech, based in the South Indian state of Kerala. The company has made digesters for 10 years and is an international finalist for the Ashden Award for sustainable energy. Biotech has installed digesters at institutions and more than 12,000 homes, where digesters can reduce use of liquefied petroleum gas by 30 percent!

Using a digester is like composting in a closed environment, whereby you store the gases omitted. There is some solid waste leftover, but it’s a useful fertilizer, like the dirt created by composting. Detail-oriented readers can view the full technical report here.

Digesters make so much sense, I was considering building my own backyard version until I remembered that chemistry isn’t my strong suit. Oh well, I guess I’ll just keep feeding the squirrels…er, I mean composting.  

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  1. By Wasted Food » Blog Archive » Friday Digest on June 22, 2007 at 10:32 am

    […] The Indian food digestion company that we talked about recently just won Britain’s Ashden Award for food security. The company, BIOTECH, has installed more than 12,000 biogas digesters that transform food waste to electricity. Best of all, the majority of these contraptions are at individual homes (closing that proverbial loop).  […]