wastewater.jpg
Black water can very easily be converted into a renewable fuel source for every major city around the World. No more expensive drilling for fuel deposits. No more waging wars of aggression to steal control of the last remaining oil and natural gas. No more BP oil spill disasters.

It is possible for cities to produce their own energy fuel supply as well as be eco friendly. The infrastructure is already there and the fuel is already being pumped through the cities. What is it that will provide cities with fuel and at the same time drastically clean up the environment? The fuel source is free for the taking and is renewable. The answer to a major city’s energy needs is sewage.

Currently Ontario cities pump billions of liters of untreated sewage into the Great Lakes every year. The main reason for pumping raw sewage into the Great Lakes is a financial reason. Before now cities saw sewage as worthless. It costs $millions to treat sewage and some cities just don’t have the budget to treat all of the sewage. “Millions of Ontarians and their kids, drink, bathe, and eat food grown with Great Lakes water yet cities are to this day pumping billions of liters of “untreated” sewage into them. The answer to the cities needs both for energy and water treatment is treating the sewage as a fuel source.

How can sewage be used as a fuel source to say generate electricity for use in the cities to power street cars, lights, air conditioners, home appliances and business computers and machines? As unappealing as it may seem sewage can cut greenhouse gases, help cleanup water supplies and add a new source of green and endlessly renewable fuel. Left on its own to decay, waste pumped from septic systems (known as septage) produce methane gas (a powerful greenhouse gas in itself) and carbon dioxide, the most popularized greenhouse gas. The result is steady supply of methane that can be used directly as fuel or mixed with natural gas for pipeline distribution. (Natural gas is mostly methane. The mix is relatively easy.) Septic waste could become a valuable commodity since it could be used to make fuel. If septic waste were channeled away from wastewater treatment facilities those facilities would be left to process only gray water, like dirty dish water.

renewable.jpg

Methane Fuel Generation From Human Wastes

- Anaerobic fermentation or digestion is the most promising process for converting organic materials to methane and other gases.
- A simple apparatus can be constructed to produce bio-gas.
- Bio-gas usually contains about 60 to 70 percent methane, 30 to 40 percent carbon dioxide, and other gases.

Converting organic materials, such as human wastes, to an easily used form of fuel can be accomplished by several methods. The process with the greatest potential is anaerobic fermentation or digestion.

The extraction of fuel from wastes using anaerobic digestion to produce bio-gas is not new and the general technology is well known. Bio-gas, which is methane and other gases, has been known as swamp gas, sewer gas and fuel gas. Sewage treatment plants generate bio-gas from the sewage sludge as part of the sewage treatment processes. Since sewage treatment is a 24/7 process bio-gas is being produced 24/7 as well. Today though, the bio-gas is not collected and used as a fuel source for the energy needs of the city, it is all vented. Using human waste to produce a renewable fuel source is not rocket science. All you have to know is how the fuel is produced and then you simply make modifications to the sewage processing plants to start producing an unending supply of fuel.

First off methane is produced by bacteria. The bacteria are anaerobes and operate only in anaerobic environments (no free oxygen). Constant temperature, pH and fresh organic matter promote maximum methane production. Temperatures usually are maintained at approximately 95 degrees F. Other temperatures can be used if held constant. For each 20 degrees F decrease, gas production will be cut approximately one half or will take twice as long. A constant temperature is critical. Temperature variations of as little as 5 degrees F can inhibit the methane-formers enough to cause acid accumulation and possible digester failure.

Anaerobic digestion is a series of processes in which micro organisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen and is widely used to treat wastewater. As part of an integrated waste management system, anaerobic digestion reduces the emission of landfill gas into the atmosphere. Anaerobic digestion is widely used as a renewable energy source because the process produces a methane and carbon dioxide rich biogas suitable for energy production helping replace fossil fuels. Also, the nutrient-rich digestate can be used as fertiliser. The digestion process begins with bacterial hydrolysis of the input materials in order to break down insoluble organic polymers such as carbohydrates and make them available for other bacteria. Acidogenic bacteria then convert the sugars and amino acids into carbon dioxide, hydrogen, ammonia, and organic acids. Acetogenic bacteria then convert these resulting organic acids into acetic acid, along with additional ammonia, hydrogen, and carbon dioxide. Methanogens, finally are able to convert these products to methane and carbon dioxide.

Anaerobic digestion is a two-part process and each part is performed by a specific group of organisms. The first part is the breakdown of complex organic matter (manure) into simple organic compounds by acid-forming bacteria. The second group of microorganisms, the methane-formers, break down the acids into methane and carbon dioxide. In a properly functioning digester, the two groups of bacteria must balance so that the methane-formers use just the acids produced by the acid-formers.

Anaerobic digestion facilities have been recognised by the United Nations Development Programme as one of the most useful decentralised sources of energy supply, as they are less capital intensive than large power plants.

A simple apparatus can produce bio-gas. The amount of the gas and the reliability desired have a great influence on the cost and complexity of the system. A simple batch-loaded digester requires an oxygen-free container, relatively constant temperature, a means of collecting gas, and some mixing. Because methane gas is explosive, appropriate safety precautions are needed.

The solution to 2 very major problems (energy needs and waste treatment) that all cities face is already flowing beneath their streets. The solution is provided by its citizens 24/7 making it the most abundant and endlessly renewable source of fuel. Just redirecting sewage into a digester in urban areas meets the entire Kyoto protocol requirements for North American cities without even considering the natural gas production.