Sunday, March 18, 2007

Septic Tanks and Anaerobic Digestion

We have been asked on a few occasions recently whether Septic Tanks are anaerobic digestors.

I would say, yes they are, but they are not usually thought of as anaerobic digestors.

Septic tanks have a primary role, which is to treat the sewage discharged into them, and any methane produced has normally been ignored in the past in the developed nations.

This is not the case in admittedly warmer developing countries where real success has been achieved in the use of anaerobic digestion of domestic and village sewage, where the aim IS to create the methane as a valuable cooking fuel for use within the dwellings served, and to use the product for its fertilising capabilities.

Should we in the west be ignoring the methane outputs from septic tanks? Do they actually contribute to global warming and by how much?

Feedback on this would be even more welcome than usual. Visit the article Septic Tanks: Are they Anaerobic Digestors?

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