Australian wastewater plant is converting 150,000 litres of beer per week into renewable energy
The coronavirus pandemic has led most people around the world to rethink their priorities and at the same time, adjust to the new normal that the year 2020 has introduced us to. Businesses, restaurants, recreational zones and much more have been in a questionable space with losses mounting due to lower revenues.
The food and beverage industry is one of the topmost that have been impacted by the lockdown. However, it seems that as the months pass, one might find hope and happiness being restored gradually in the world.
In Australia, The Glenelg Wastewater Treatment Plant, is using beer that expired due to falling sales in restaurants, pubs and clubs to turn it into renewable energy.
It might not be as complicated a process, and it’s also a best-case scenario to avoid wastage (a litre of beer requires approximately four litres of water). The beer biodegrades under high temperatures and is mixed with sewage sludge which releases biogas, which in turn, generates electricity.
The wastewater plant has been recycling 150,000 litres of expired beer per week. That’s enough beer to power 1,200 houses in all.
Using beer to convert into electricity has seen a record energy generation at the plant.
The wastewater treatment facility usually generates enough biogas to provide around “80 per cent of the required energy to run, but thanks to the recent influx of beer the site has become completely self-reliant,” as reported by ABC Australia.
SA Water is hopeful that this process will be sustainable even when the pandemic is over.
“Through the height of the COVID-19 [pandemic] we’ve been able to accept expired beer from industry … as they’ve needed to dispose of it,” said SA Water senior manager of production and treatment Lisa Hannan.
“We’ve accepted around 150,000 litres of beer each week … which would be the equivalent of powering around 1,200 houses. The beer is a really great waste to add into our digester because it has such a high energy value to it.”
This is a win for the environment, sustainable living and also a hopeful future of low or no wastage.