Using Food Waste to Produce Renewable Energy


Food waste disposal is the biggest problem in Taiwan. In fact, food waste generates billions of dollars annually for Taiwanese taxpayers. Food waste is an important source of water and air pollution and Taiwan’s rapidly growing rural population is over-exposed to soil pollution from food waste. Sufficient soil fertility decreases agricultural productivity, making it difficult to produce enough food to feed a growing number of people.

An Overview

A pile of fruit

Soil microbiology indicates that aerobic (oxygen-requiring) microorganisms do not feed on food waste. The anaerobic (no oxygen) microorganisms feed on food waste as they breakdown it for fuel, but the process is inefficient and feeds toxic gases back into the environment. As a result, farmers must compost or otherwise dispose of the resulting humus to create usable fertilizer and generate energy.

Biomass energy refers to biological electricity generated through the process of aerobic digestion. This type of electricity is useful for generating heat, steam and electricity. The heat generated by biomass combustion is often in sufficient quantities to be used to heat residential homes. Scientists believe that the potential for renewable biomass combustion holds the key to the future of low-cost electricity output.

One method of converting food waste into a form of electricity is known as biogasification. In biogasification, solid waste such as kitchen leftovers and animal waste is fermented by natural enzymes and chemicals. The resulting sludge is usually in liquid form, but can sometimes be solidified to the point that it releases gas.

Renewable Energy Production With Food Waste

A plate of food on a table

The most effective way of using biomass in the form of energy is by combining it with natural gas and oil to create a closed loop gasification system. During the fermentation of food waste, the sludge releases energy in the form of gaseous emissions, which are then separated from the solid waste at a later stage. The resulting gaseous emissions are then fed into the electricity generating equipment.

The most commonly used organic wastes in biogas systems are meat, vegetables and dairy products, along with other unsold food waste. Meat and dairy products have the highest percentage of fat, so they require more energy to break down than other types of food waste. Animal products, however, contain methane, which is not immediately usable by the organisms breaking it down. The biogasification process breaks down the methane to produce long chain gases which are then compressed and discharged into the air.

There are several advantages associated with using food waste to generate electricity. Food waste is recyclable, making it a renewable energy source. It also provides a valuable source of organic waste for composting, which can be used for the production of fertilizer and soil fertilizers.

Biogas generated from food waste can also be used to power small home appliances such as coffee makers or to supplement household electric power. One can also use this organic waste to create energy directly by means of the biofuel created during the digestion of the food. This is a more environmentally friendly way to generate electricity since no fossil fuels are used, only natural biomass. The waste is also safe for the environment as no toxic gases are released during the process of biofertilization. Food waste can be easily and economically recycled to create unlimited sources of renewable energy. This is another advantage of food waste to energy, because one can easily start creating new energy from waste.

Food waste that has not been decomposed can be inorganic or organic. To use food waste to energy one can either choose to either create new energy from the organic waste, or to recycle food waste and use the methane gas that is present to create energy. Both options are viable since using the methane that is present will help to offset the cost of producing the energy. The most effective method to use food waste to generate energy using methane is through aerobic composting. This is where aerobic bacteria are added to the food which breaks it down into methane and oxygen.

In Conclusion

If you are able to find the right company that provides you with the equipment and the right training, using food waste to produce electricity will be one of the best things that you can do for the environment. This is because you are taking advantage of a natural process that uses bacteria and other organisms to break down food waste into simpler compounds that can then power a generator. If you can find a company that is able to provide you with enough food waste to produce enough electricity to power your entire home, you will be doing your part to save the environment while you continue to get reliable electricity. You can even sell any excess electricity that you produce to your power company so that you will always have some money left over.

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