Innovations turn trash into energy


A more sustainable life requires a new look at everything that human beings produce, including garbage. To give you an idea, 29% more trash was generated in Brazil from 2003 to 2014, while population growth during this period was just 6%, according to a study by the Brazilian Association of Public Sanitation and Special Waste Companies (Abrelpe), released in 2015.


Faced with a situation like this, rethinking day-to-day practices to minimize waste is beyond urgent, in addition to correctly disposing of waste. And that is where innovation comes into play, turning “trash” into electricity, a luxury for the nearly 1.5 billion people who live without electrical power, according to data from the UN (United Nations).

With an eye towards sustainable development, some industries are already investing in producing electricity from alternatives sources. Take a look:


shutterstock_285916715 Converting food waste into cooking gas – this is the proposal of HomeBiogas, an Israeli company that created a system to convert organic food waste into cooking gas. The waste in this process becomes liquid compost for the garden. And the gas produced from discarded food is enough to keep an oven on for three hours.


shutterstock_156256430 Landfill rash generates electricity – in September of this year, the city of Caieiras (SP) opened the largest methane-based thermoelectric power plant in Brazil, using methane gas from the Termoverde Caieiras landfill. Power generated from the trash is enough to supply a city of around 300,000, such as Limeira, Guarujá or Taubaté. In 2014, the Guatapará landfill was the first in the
state to generate electricity from trash for 20 cities.


At International Paper wood scraps from industrial processes (wood chips) also generates energy for units, which means significant savings for IP as well as gains in sustainability based on the use of a renewable energy source: eucalyptus biomass.




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