Wednesday, September 20, 2017

IADAB News Weekly - Edition 1 Announcing Our New Anaerobic Digestion & Biogas Weekly Newsletter

Date: 21 September 2017

The IPPTS Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas News WEEKLY

It’s Thursday the 21st of June, and this is our very first issue of IADAB News Weekly, Edition 1! 

We will now be providing this news digest every week. Watch our intro email, and then read on because the full article is available below this video:

It's free, and our mission is to bring you the latest AD and Biogas news in a concise form

We aim to keep all our subscribers informed of the latest developments in the anaerobic digestion and biogas industry in the UK and globally. 

In today’s news we have a new planning application announced for a biogas plant to be built on a brownfield site in Sheffield which seems to tick all the boxes for sustainability. 

We can say that because we are told that the feedstock will be food-waste, and that the biogas will be upgraded to biomethane.

We also assume that the high efficiency plant will be one of the current breed of the most efficient type of AD energy uses, that being direct injection into the gas grid.

The developers of the Beeley AD Plant, will no doubt be be relieved, by the UK Department for Transport's (DfT's) response to its consultation on the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) which we cover in our second featured article.

In our final excerpt, we report on an academic investigation in progress on the anaerobic co-digestion of food waste with sewage sludge

We do so, because we like to emphasise that Anaerobic Digestion is still a young discipline and that the technology is likely to develop much higher process efficiencies through research of this type.

Those stories are coming up right here...

Anaerobic Digestion Plant Planned for Beeley Wood

Plans have been submitted to develop an anaerobic digestion plant at the Beeley Wood Sustainable Business Park in Sheffield to replace a WWII-era factory and generate enough gas to power 2,500 homes.

Plans put together by Pegasus Group on behalf of Beeley Wood Biogas Ltd detail have been submitted to Sheffield City Council to redevelop the land bordering Beeley Wood in the Don Valley.

The site was formerly used by Union Carbide in the aftermath of World War II to produce carbon electrodes for the steel industry, graphite rods for the nuclear industry and related industrial products.

The new plant would receive commercial waste that has been accepted and de-packaged at the adjacent Waste Recycling and Destruction Ltd food recycling centre. via Anaerobic digestion plant planned for Beeley Wood

Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association - Biomethane perfectly positioned to meet new renewable fuel targets

The UK's trade body for anaerobic digestion (AD) has welcomed the Department for Transport's (DfT's) response to its consultation on the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO), declaring biomethane to be perfectly positioned' to meet increased targets for renewable fuels.

DfT's reforms will obligate fuel suppliers to provide 9.75% of all fuels from renewable sources by 2020, a doubling of the current 4.75% obligation that will then rise to 12.4% of all fuels by 2032, helping to align the RTFO with the Government's Carbon Budgets. 

Biomethane produced through the recycling of organic wastes and energy crops is one such fuel derived from renewable sources that can help fuel suppliers to meet this new higher target, particularly for heavier vehicles for which electrification is impractical or expensive.

With more than 80 AD plants across the UK already producing biomethane, the UK AD industry has sufficient capacity today to produce enough biomethane to power 80% of the UK's entire bus fleet and the potential to produce enough biomethane to power 75% of all HGVs in the UK. It can also be used directly on farms to fuel agricultural vehicles.

Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (ADBA), said of DfT's response to the RTFO consultation:

ADBA greatly welcomes DfT's increased commitment to supporting low-carbon fuels, which are essential for decarbonising the UK's emissions-heavy transport sector and meeting our Carbon Budgets.

The rising of the obligation for renewable-sourced fuels to 12.4% by 2032 goes beyond what was originally consulted on and will create a positive investment environment for renewable fuels. As a low-carbon, low-cost, and technology-ready transport fuel that can deliver £2.1 bn in CO2e savings per year and dramatically improve air quality, biomethane is perfectly positioned to play a leading role in helping fuel suppliers to meet these increased targets.

This news represents a huge opportunity for biomethane and will give plenty of food for thought and discussion at the ADBA Biomethane & Gas Vehicle Conference taking place in Leeds the week after next. via Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association - Biomethane perfectly positioned to meet new renewable fuel targets – ADBA

Investigation on the anaerobic co-digestion of food waste with sewage sludge

In this laboratory-scale investigation on the applicability of the co-digestion of food waste with sewage sludge, evaluated were the effects of the single-stage versus two-stage operating modes at the hydraulic retention time (HRT) of 15 days, and the impact of HRTs: 15 days vs. 25 days, on the single-stage operation. via Investigation on the anaerobic co-digestion of food waste with sewage sludge.

We anticipate that our readers, just like ADBA will welcome the UK's DfT's increased support for low-carbon fuels, and in other nations globally this news will perhaps help to reinforce UK government statements that the UK will continue to support its decarbonisation commitments.

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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

5 Ways in Which Biogas Can Reduce Urban Air Pollution

This short video explains how biogas can reduce urban air pollution.

1- Gas powered vehicles emit far lower Nitogen Oxides, known as NOx, and particulate matter than their diesel-based counterparts.By transPublish Postitioning away from petrol and diesel fuels to biomethane, cities can achieve both GHG emissions reduction and improved air quality.This has already been done successfully for some vehicle fleets in some cities including Lille and Berlin.

2. Replacing other fuels with biogas use can reduce Fine Particulate Matter in urban air in developing countries. Over 30% of fine particulate matter in the urban air in Central and Eastern Europe and Africa originates from domestic burning of solid fuel such as wood and coal for heat and cooking.

3. Replacing wood with biogas as domestic fuel would almost eliminate particulate matter emissions from this source.

4. Replacing coal with biogas for electricity production would nearly eliminate particulate matter emissions and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by over 40%.

5. Diverting organic waste away from landfills may improve air quality around the landfill, and in particular can reduce odours.

6. By collecting and using food waste, or the organic fraction of municipal solid waste, for the production of biogas energy, cities can improve air quality.This is because biogas plants not only generate their own renewable power via biogas, but can also be used to dispose of the waste, which will no longer be sent to landfills.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

7 Tips to Decide if Anaerobic Digestion of Biomass Will Benefit Food Com...

Food Processing companies should use these 7 Tips to make an assessment of whether their business can benefit from the Anaerobic Digestion of Biomass.

The fact is that anaerobic digestion of biomass can be of real benefit to some food companies which prepare food products of all types.

Waste biomass has a value when it is used as the feedstock for an anaerobic digestion plant, but these companies often don’t appreciate the biomass asset which hides unseen, in the highly organic content of their food processing waste.

Food companies are not only unaware that they can make money from the anaerobic digestion of their biomass, but what is even worse is that the chances are that disposing of it is costing them a lot of money.

These companies are charged for their waste treatment and disposal according to the Mogden formula,

which calculates costs according to the volume and strength of their waste water.

Like other industrial companies that discharge waste water into the sewerage network, they should make a conscious decision whether or not, to invest, in an energy producing anaerobic digestion (biogas) plant. If they did they would be able to use the energy to power their food waste processing factory, and most likely sell some of it to their local electricity network (local grid company).

The following are our the headings to our 7 tips to Assess whether, the Anaerobic Digestion of Biomass Will Benefit a Food Company:

Tip 1. Ensure any review starts with core decisions at the production process level,

Tip 2. Collect real plant data and collate it in intelligible formats,

Tip 3. Seek out high waste content streams,

Tip 4. Optimisation of Return on Investment,

Tip 5. Look at other solutions including for example the anaerobic digestion of biomass,

Tip 6. Re-assess whether to keep resources in-house,

Tip 7. Choose a contractor with a track record.

It’s all about going back to basics first, having an intimate knowledge of what the waste profile is of the plant, and finally being courageous to change the way companies work.

For those prepared to put in the investment, and work to collect the right data, and apply that to an in-depth understanding of their waste water and biomass waste issues the benefits can be amazing.

If they then partner with an experienced contractor, to deliver the necessary infrastructure,

such as an anaerobic digestion of biomass facility, there is a lot of opportunity out there.

Now read the full article at

For AD Consultancy services visit

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Anaerobic Digestion of Dog Poop Fuelled a Pacific Park Lamp - What Now?

The story of anaerobic digestion of dog poop which at first simply lights a park lamp, but can do much more in future, is a fascinating story for its use in anaerobic digestion, to both render it harmless by providing soil improver/ a fertiliser after pastuerisation, and an energy source (methane biogas).

To demonstrate this fact we have put together some of the articles on the subject which are available on the internet.

If you are like many people you will be reading this with disbelief, and we don't blame you. 

How could all that smelly dog poop which is such a high disease risk, especially for children, possibly become a substance which can be useful?

Our video will explain this. Watch our video below:

Note: The video says click the link below, but there is no need to click any links, because you are already here, on the full article page!

The answer is through using the anaerobic digestion process in a new and very simple low-rate low temperature biogas digester, huge new possibilities emerge. Unfortunately, uptake for new parks, seems to have stalled as we explain below, but the idea is interesting.

First, let us look at the typical research which confirms the potential of dog poop to feed anaerobic digestion plants.

It confirms that there is both plenty of it that is now being collected, and when blended with certain other biomass (for example grass mowings), there is a synergy that is very productive:

Comparative Study of the Potential of Dog Waste for Biogas

The potential of dog waste to produce biogas and/or enhance the biogas productivity of some other animal and plant wastes was investigated.

From the trials it was concluded that... dog waste can be a source of biogas and a source of catalyst for prolonging the retention time of other waste samples such as field grass and cow dung.

The result of the proximate and microbial analyses reveals that dog waste has high potential for biogas production that even though its quantity may be small, it is a good blend for other waste types such as field grass and cow dung. via Comparative Study of the Potential of Dog Waste for Biogas

But, how much dog poop is available?

6,500 tons of dog poop is produced in the San Francisco alone... Local authorities do provide dog waste ... Yard waste and food scraps can go through the same biogas ... via Dog Poop Power For San Francisco

So, the problem of dog poop exists, there is lots of it, and there are researchers that say anaerobic digestion will work, but is it already being digested? Is it being digested in biogas plants anywhere?

The simple answer is, yes it is, in a number of cities. An example is described in the article excerpt below, about Waterloo Council in Canada

Dog waste anaerobic digestion scheme for Waterloo, Canada

(2012) The city of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, will soon be home to a dog waste biogas facility, according to the Huffington Post. Dog waste from around the city will be collected and turned into energy using anaerobic digestion. It will be one of the first times such a program has been used in a Canadian city. 

Although already popular in smaller Canadian towns, dog waste anaerobic digestion has yet to be tested in a city of Waterloo’s size.

Special ‘receptacles’ will be set up around the city which dog owners can put their dog’s waste into instead of a regular litter bin. The dog waste bins will be bright green, with a dog-shaped opening.

"It's actually a big issue, dog waste. If you look at our municipal litter bins ... it's 40 to 80 per cent dog waste,'' Waterloo mayor Dave Jaworsky told the Huffington Post. The city has a population of about 100,000 people.

After being stored underground for ten to 14 days, the dog waste will be vacuumed out and sent to a processing plant outside the city, where it will be used to create biogas for heat and energy. Any surplus will be used for fertiliser. ... via Dog waste anaerobic digestion scheme for Waterloo, Canada

Ah! Those Canadians can do it, but it is probably highly subsidised you say, given that this example is in Canada.

But let us tell you that this works at many different scales, and at a low rate in the following example:

Dog Poop Has Bright Side: Powering a Park Lamp

It stinks and it's a hazard to walkers everywhere, but it turns out dog poop has a bright side. Dog poop is lighting a lantern at a Cambridge dog park as part of a monthslong project that its creator, artist Matthew Mazzotta, hopes will get people thinking about not wasting waste.

The "Park Spark" poop converter is actually two steel, 500-gallon oil tanks painted a golden yellow, connected by diagonal black piping and attached to an old gaslight-style street lantern at the Pacific Street Park.

After the dogs do their business, signs on the tanks instruct owners to use biodegradable bags supplied on site to pick up the poop and deposit it into the left tank. People then turn a wheel to stir its insides, which contain waste and water. Microbes in the waste give off methane, an odorless gas that is fed through the tanks to the lamp and burned off. The park is small but has proven busy enough to ensure a steady supply of fuel.

Dog owner Lindsey Leason, a 29-year-old Harvard student, said she was all for seeing poop in a new light as she watched her two dogs play at the park. ... via Dog Poop Has Bright Side: Powering Park Lamp

Oh! But, this is only playing at producing methane, the doubters would say.
So, let us provide another article in which this is reported again as working:

Dog poop methane digester turns waste into biogas

City parks confronted with dog waste hope to turn the nuisance into a usable source of biogas. With the  "Park Spark" poop converter is actually two steel, 500-gallon oil tanks painted a golden yellow, connected by diagonal black piping and attached to an old gaslight-style street lantern at the Pacific Street Park.

After the dogs do their business, signs on the tanks instruct owners to use biodegradable bags supplied on site to pick up the poop and deposit it into the left tank. People then turn a wheel to stir its insides, which contain waste and water. Microbes in the waste give off methane, an odorless gas that is fed through the tanks to the lamp and burned off. The park is small but has proven busy enough to ensure a steady supply of fuel.

Dog owner Lindsey Leason, a 29-year-old Harvard student, said she was all for seeing poop in a new light as she watched her two dogs play at the park.

Dog poop methane digester turns waste into biogas - YouTube via Dog poop methane digester turns waste into biogas - YouTube

We agree that to show that municipal authorities in wealthy cities are digesting dog poo successfully, may be one thing, but large scale take up of dog poo as a "green" energy source will not begin until businesses can do this, offer to take dog poo, and make money with it.

That's why the Pacific park lamp articles are so interesting.

Unfortunately, the park lamp biogas idea does not seem to have withstood the test of time.

A company in Wales, UK, which was promoting the method in the UK, as shown by the following article, is not actively promoting this any longer on their website.
Back in 2012 they were reported as below:

Welsh Company Streetkleen Taps Dog Waste for Renewable Biogas

A business model for dog waste-to-biogas
The waste-to-lamplight stations are ideal in terms of public awareness and they could raise some opportunities for revenue from corporate sponsorships, but the real meat of Streetkleen’s business plan will be a network of Streetkleen waste disposal receptacles that come complete with biodegradable waste bags.

Under contracts with local governments, the waste would be picked up regularly and taken to a commercial scale digester facility.

Assuming that dog owners tune into the new system and use the special dog waste receptacles instead of putting the waste in with mixed trash, that could add up to quite a bundle. In the U.K., an estimated 1 million dogs generate about 1,000 British tons (tonnes) of waste every day.

In the U.S. the economy of scale could really kick in. According to an ASPCA estimate, there are more than 1.5 million dogs in New York City alone.

For that matter, dog waste removal is already starting to turn into a business opportunity, in the form of pet waste removal companies that serve homes and private companies, so it’s not a stretch to apply a similar model to municipal pet waste removal.

Local governments would pay for the service, but at least some of that cost would be offset by diverting tons of heavy, soggy waste out of the general stream that would otherwise go to incinerators or landfills.

Dog poop methane digester turns waste into biogas - via Welsh Company Streetkleen Taps Dog Waste for Renewable Biogas

The park lamp biogas method articles stop in 2013, so clearly a problem has occurred with this business model.

Nevertheless, dog poop biogas production is moving forward now that there are many more anaerobic digestion food waste plants which can accept this waste for co-digestion with the food waste.

Plus, Streetkleen was promoting a fascinating, and highly innovative business model, no matter what the outcome.

Local authorities in the UK who are sending dog poop to landfill will be being charged at a cost of about GBP100 per tonne, so there is money to be had from accepting dog poo in anaerobic digestion plants, with suitable waste management licenses.

If anyone reading this knows about the current fate of any of the park lamp biogas plants we would love to know what has happened since 2013? Are the original lamps still biogas lit?

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Is a UK Waste Treatment Capacity Crisis Looming?

ESA says a Residual Waste Crisis due toa  lackof sufficient capcity is looming for the UK, but independent consultancy Eunomia says the opposite.

We suggest you visit our article at: to read more on this subject.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Egg Shaped Anaerobic Digesters - The Secret of Huge Spherical Shaped Tanks

Many people wonder what those partly spherical, and partly egg-shaped, tanks in multiples of two to four really are at their local sewage works.  

That's why we wrote this article, and a video (see below) on exactly the same subject, namely: "Anaerobic Digesters - those Strange Looking Tanks Explained"

Have you ever wondered what those huge "other worldy", and futuristic, spherical tanks are that you sometimes see while out driving?

They are anaerobic digestion process digesters, and very useful they are too!

Watch our video about this, here:

When you hear why they are built in that shape, you will be intrigued at the way that the designers have thought of so many problematic aspects of their AD process. Then they used careful attention to the shape of these biogas reactors to make the process work much better than it would in standard square, rectangular or circular tanks.

These digesters are themselves very valuable, because they make sewage sludge much more wholesome and in particular they reduce sludge odour.

But, best of all, they make large amounts of renewable energy to power the sewage works they form part of. Many of them export their spare "green" electricity to the local power grid.

Ratepayers benefit by the reduced cost of their sewage treatment, due to these companies ploughing back the revenue from selling the electric power, from these digesters, into the sewage works accounts, to offset the sewage treatment operating costs.

Egg-shaped digesters originated in Germany in the 1950s and it is thought that all are used to treat sewage works sludge.

  1. The steeply sloped bottom of the tank eliminates grit accumulation.
  2. Grit can easily be removed from the bottom, therefore, cleaning is not required.
  3. Liquid surface area at the top is small, so scum can be kept fluid with a mixer, and removed through a scum door.
  4. Egg-shaped digesters can be built with steel or concrete.
  5. Steel construction is more common because concrete construction requires complex formwork and special construction techniques.

If you found our article, and the above video interesting, now read more at our website.

Go to:

This video was inspired by the presentation on egg-shaped digesters at:

Monday, August 28, 2017

Digester Covers - Digester Cover Design for Biogas Plants

Every digester deepends upon its cover to provide a good air-seal, but are you aware of the digester cover types and the other purposes of these covers?

In this article and in our video below which includes the same content as this page, we talk about digester cover design, and the popularity of membrane digester covers.

Many covers are available from manufacturers/ suppliers like Walker Process Digester Covers.

In fact we think you will find digester gas storage, whether as a floating roof digester cover, double membrane gas holder, to be an interesting subject. See also suppliers/contractors Westech Engineering, and Ovivo for digester cover designs.

To see our other, (more comprehensive) article, visit:
The Video Transcription Text Follows:

Digester Covers. Those Distinctive-Looking Curved, Biogas Tank-Tops

Anaerobic-digestion plant biogas-digesters, are normally covered with a fixed, or floating top, for gas collection.

These tank tops are a very distinctive shape. Once you recognize that shape, an anaerobic-digestion plant is easy to spot from a distance.

There are 3 types:

1.. Floating covers which rise-and-fall according to volume of gas and substrate and their weight provides the gas pressure.
2. Fixed covers which require a separate biogas-holder connected to the space above the digester, that allows the gas to move in both directions.
3. The most popular and easily-recognised distinctive double flexible-membrane covers.

In all but the first type of digester-cover, the pressure of the gas is controlled by an automatic pump.
Digester covers are designed to provide the following:

a) A permanent seal to prevent oxygen entering the digester.
b) A degree of pressurisation to the biogas.
c) In cold countries the cover must provide heat-insulation to keep the digester warm.

Double membrane digester covers are popular, due to their low cost, and when manufactured to high-quality standards they have a remarkably-long service-life.

We hope you found this video interesting.

A Note on Double Membrane Cover Pressurisation

In double membrane cover designs the outer cover, is usually pressurised with the low-oxygen content exhaust from an engine-generator or boiler, etc. The low oxygen level gas between the outer membrane and the inner, reduces the explosion risk.

It also provides a durable and intrinsically safe, warm gas shell over the flexible, inner biogas collection cover and digester cell itself.

The outer cover is maintained at a preset pressure, to hold the outer membrane taught. Taught enough to withstand tornado strength winds.

Snow, sleet and ice is no problem to these roofs because all are rapidly melted off of the outer cover due to its warmth.

The inner digester cover is, as a result, never directly exposed to wind or sunlight. That extends its useful life considerably.

The flexible inner cover is allowed to rise and fall based on the rates of biogas production and biogas fuel demand.

These covers, when fitted over digesters, tend to provide in the region of 48 hours of Biogas storage.

Now you can read the full blog article at:
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