WASTE MANAGEMENT USING BIOGAS COMPLEXES
The main task of biogas plants, which are actively being built in Europe, recently in Ukraine, is the production of a renewable energy source. Biogas, a product of the work of these complexes. Biogas use natural gas (subject to equipment changes), burning in heat generating or power generating installations.
The problem of waste management in light of the possibilities of biotechnology
In addition to obtaining biogas and additional energy, the above stations solve several more important problems. One of them is the problem of waste disposal. It is no secret that as a result of the economic activity of the enterprise — sewage treatment plants, food and agricultural plants — to some extent produce non-recyclable residues, the mass and volume of which can reach significant volumes. Example: Beet pulp is a by-product of sugar production. Its yield is about 80% by weight of processed sugar beets **. Partially pulp is processed into animal feed, but the bulk must be disposed of.
Another example is the secondary products of food industry enterprises: whey, vegetable or fruit meal, etc., the volume of which amounts to tens of tons.
All these products are organic residues that, when properly handled, become raw materials for the biogas complex. Due to anaerobic fermentation, biogas is obtained from the prepared substrate. Thus, enterprises get rid of the need for waste disposal, and also get the opportunity to derive additional profit from the use or sale of their own electricity.
Getting electricity from waste – problems and solutions
With proper planning, waste management becomes not a source of costs, but a means of profit. For a better understanding, it should be said that the processing of waste into biogas and organic fertilizers is not utilization (destruction) in the strict sense of the word.
Bioenergy, namely biogas complexes, uses organic waste as raw material – substrate – for production. Thus, biogas can be produced through the disposal of organic waste in the biogas complex.
For a successful, cost-effective project, it is extremely important to correctly analyze the source materials, build an effective process and ensure a regular and sufficient supply of raw materials. Given that the waste from various industries has a very different composition and acidity, you need to correctly calculate the waste mixture for the substrate.
The barrier in this case is the need to mix different wastes. This is primarily due to the heterogeneity of the substrate and the need to maintain a certain pH level, the ratio between carbon and nitrogen, the presence of methanogenesis inhibiting compounds.
The fact is that the reaction with the formation of methane can occur only under certain conditions. Too high or too low a pH prevents oxidation of the substrate. As a result, biogas contains too little methane or has many impurities.
A universal solution to this problem is the creation of energy cooperatives consisting of enterprises from various industries. For each of the participants, the problem of waste disposal is solved, and the biogas produced is spent on heating or generating electricity.
Biogas from the waste of diversified enterprises
As mentioned above, the issue of waste management can be successfully resolved by creating a kind of joint ventures between different organizations. What would become an impossible financial task for one farm turns into a mutually beneficial project for a group of enterprises.
There are many schemes for implementing such projects. For example, the creation of a new legal entity with equal shares of investments from each interested party. As an example, consider the production of biogas by food and water treatment enterprises.
In this case, the sediment of treatment plants with a high pH value of 8–9 can act as a substrate together with food industry wastes (fruit puree, vegetable / fruit squeezes, etc.), which have a pH of 4–5. The total pH level is selected by mixing different proportions of waste. Such a simple solution allows minimizing the cost of reagents, increasing the efficiency of the biogas plant, and thereby reducing the payback period of the project.
Ecodevelop specialists are able to analyze and calculate the entire waste chain. We will design a biogas complex taking into account the peculiarities of raw materials, the regularity of waste supplies, train staff and bring the facility to its design capacity. Biogas from waste is subsequently processed into thermal and electric energy.
Generation of electricity from waste
The cooperation of different enterprises is beneficial in terms of the generation of thermal energy at the level of electric energy in a cogeneration unit. If electricity is supplied directly to the grid at a green tariff, then heat can be used for the own needs of participating companies. Biogas burned in the boiler room instead of natural gas reduces the dependence of enterprises on heat suppliers, reduces the cost of heating buildings, structures, houses or greenhouses.
The green tariff in Ukraine is one of the highest in Europe, so the production and sale of electricity brings profit to the owners of a biogas cooperative. In addition, its own electricity gives independence from the central electric networks and prevents emergencies caused by its shutdown.
A promising by-product of the biogas complex is the production of organic fertilizers. In this context, it is worth including in this cooperative agricultural enterprises for mutual benefit.
Biogas and the problem of waste disposal
Biogas refers to renewable sources, and is able to replace expensive natural gas in heating systems or electricity generators. Biogas complexes use biomass from waste products from enterprises of various industries as raw materials. A thorough analysis, preparation of mixtures and adherence to technological regimes make it possible to obtain biogas with a high methane content. Thus, the disposal of waste by processing it into biogas allows you to:
- get rid of waste disposal costs;
- improve the environment due to waste recycling;
- get an additional resource in the form of heat;
- receive income from the sale of electricity;
- receive income from the production of fertilizers.
Ecodevelop company designs, builds and partially finances biogas plant projects in Ukraine. Biogas from waste can be a promising direction for the development of your business.