My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: GENeco Bio-Bus runs on Bio-Methane - How 10% of UK's Heating from Human Organic Waste Alone makes Shit worthwhile

Monday, December 22, 2014

GENeco Bio-Bus runs on Bio-Methane - How 10% of UK's Heating from Human Organic Waste Alone makes Shit worthwhile

“The bus is powered by people living in the local area, including quite possibly those on the bus itself”

GENeco spokesperson Mohammed Saddiq from GENeco, commenting on the GENeco Bio-Bus

If you’re one of those persons who believe that your shit is worth its weight gold, you may be on to something.

GENeco, a sewage processing plant company, has come up with an innovative way to process leftover food and sewage. They're decided to see in a one of a kind experiment to power a bus called the GENeco Bio-Bus using Bio-Methane as described in the article “This bus runs on human poop”, published November 24, 2014: 10:44 AM ET by Ivana Kottasova, CNN Money.

GENeco Bio-Bus is a 40-seater A4 Bus, no bigger than a typical JUTC Bus here in Jamaica, if it were to carry only seated passengers as noted in the article “All aboard the poop bus, now farting around the UK”, published 21 November 2014 6:30 pm GMT by Anthony Domanico, CNET News. GENeco Bio-Bus will ply the route between the Bristol airport and the historic town of Bath, a distance of 20km (12.4m).

They’ll potentially be carrying as many as 10,000 passengers per annum along this well trafficked route, as going to the Bristol Airport is a regular activity. Makes sense too, as Bio-Methane from the people of Bath is already being used to heat the homes of the very same residents.

UK and Bio-Methane - 10% of Britain's Heating from Human Organic Waste Alone makes shit worthwhile

Potentially, if the UK were to utilize all of its sewage to make Bio-Methane, it could supply up to 10% of UK's heating means, making faeces, the fancy name for shit, really worth its weight in gold!

According to GENeco:

1.      299.34 km (186 miles) is the distance the GENeco Bio-Bus can travel on a full tank of Bio-Methane
2.      59.55 miles (37 km) is the distance one persons annual waste i.e. organic material, faeces and urine can allow the bus to travel

Therefore according to these figures, to fill the tank of a GENeco Bio-Bus requires the annual waste of five (5) persons. This might sound inefficient, but remember that the annual waste of a UK resident will be stored in liquid form in huge Processing tanks at GENeco Sewage processing plant; potentially they could have hundreds of years worth of British Human waste stored.

And that's just human waste; cows and farm animals as well as organic material from plants i.e. grass cutting from lawns, gardens, etc and dead animals, can be harnessed and bio-digested into methane and carbon dioxide. So this is beginning to look more like say 50% of UK's heating needs, something the Gas companies are sure to like or dislike, depending on how they see the efficiency gains of Bio-Methane as well as keeping their Gas supplies domestic, so to speak.

Clearly this is a proof-of-concept that has huge potential, even though the News reporting doesn’t appear to take it quite so seriously.

GENeco Bio-Bus and Bio-Methane - Suitable replacement for LPG that can power Combustion Engines

The GENeco Bio-Bus' fuel, Bio-Methane Gas, is generated through the treatment of sewage. The bus' tanks are modified to a design similar to those used by vehicles that run on LPG as described in my Geezam blog article entitled “Auto LPG as a Motor Vehicle Fuel”.

Because Bio-Methane is a Gas, there is no need for a Fuel Filter or a Fuel Heater, albeit the fuel line will have an Air Filter instead as well as a pressure regulator for the detection of leaks. And no, the Bio-Methane doesn’t smell like what it was made of, that being fecal material and rotting organic matter, i.e. vegetables, meat, etc. Rather, it'll have a scent added to it similar to LPG Gasoline tanks that Jamaicans currently uses as to enable the detection of leaks, should it happen to leak of course.

Typical of any LPG Vehicle, the GENeco Bio-Bus' fuel engine will not only burn fuel more cleanly but also more efficiently. In fact, Bio-methane can be used in place of LPG and can potentially be used to make running public transport more efficient as argued in my blog article entitled “JUTC faced PAAC on Wedneday September 17th 2014 – JUTC Buses can’t run on ULSD as LPG Better for the JUTC Buses Fuel Injectors

The reductions in Greenhouse Gas emissions are significant when compared to the use of liquid fuels such as Gasoline and Diesel according to the article “UK's first 'poo bus' goes into service between Bristol and Bath”, published 20 November 2014, BBC News:

1.      90% reduction when compared to Gasoline
2.      30% reduction when compared to Diesel

The energy content of Bio-Methane makes is suitable enough to replace Gasoline or diesel without a noticeable decrease in mileage as noted in my blog article entitled “China: China to promote LNG in Public Transport”.

So far from being laughable, there is huge potential in using human, animal and organic waste to make Bio-fuel, particularly Bio-Methane!

Recycling Organic Waste - Jamaica's Bio-Fuel Revolution need GOJ support

As my article had pointed out, using LPG is more efficient. Using Bio-Methane appears to have similar benefits for the vehicle's engine. Already, here in Jamaica, we've made extensive usage of our biofuel, though not human waste but organic waste.

Research being done by Dr. Micheal Coley of the University of the West Indies in conjunction with the NGO (Non-Governmental Organization) YCWJ (Youth Crime Watch Jamaica) t convert waste Cooking Oil into bio-diesel as detailed in my blog article entitled UWI and YCWJ team up to Recycle Waste Cooking Oil - Yendi Phillipps on How to make National Bio-Diesel Production from Waste Cooking Oil Insidious Chapter 2” is but one example.

Chinese-owned Pan Caribbean Sugar Company has plans to use Bagasse, the leftover byproduct of sugar production to not only generate electricity but also to make biofuel for cars as noted in my blog article entitled “Pan Caribbean Sugar Company Ltd Bagasse Co-Generation and Biofuel Project - How Bagasse Biofuel along with Dr Michael Coley Cooking Oil Recycling Project can reduce Oil Bill”.

And that's just Cooking Oil and Bagasse. Potentially too, we can also recycle Old Car tyres to make Gasoline on as large scale as is already being done in the USA and St. Lucia and the Grenadines as described in my blog article entitled “St. Lucia’s SLSWMA to make Fuel from Tyres - Why is Jamaica not converting Tyres at Riverton City Dump into Fuel”.

In fact, using Solar Powered Vacuum Pyrolysis, you can convert any plastic, rubber or even ordinary Organic material into fuel as described in my blog article entitled “How to make Diesel and Gasoline from the Pyrolysis of Car Tyres and Plastics - Jamaican Riverton City Dump Fire Ecological Disaster solution that reduces Jamaica's Oil Bill”, with additional systems needed on this process to remove excess sulphur and Carbon for resale as a VAS (Value Added Service) from this process

GENeco Bio-Bus shows the potential of human shit an organic food waste. But we here in Jamaica can process virtually any organic waste into fuel as we generate tons of garbage daily, fuelling both our JUTC buses, motor vehicles as well as producing Cooking Gas. 

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