Located just a half hour outside of Portland, the town of Brunswick has always had an eye towards improving the town’s waste disposal services. Just last week the town green lighted the construction of a new anaerobic digester to convert the town’s waste into clean electricity. The new waste to energy plant will be built by Village Green Ventures, a New York tech company specializing in the design and implementation of W-t-E technology.
While we have covered anaerobic digesters in depth before, they are slightly different from the usual W-t-E facility. The entire process of breaking down trash and converting it to electricity is carried out by bacteria. Garbage, typically food waste, is loaded into a chamber where the little bacteria go to town on it, eating up all the organic matter and belching out methane and other gases. These gases are then collected and burned to drive on-site turbines which generate the electricity. This power can then be used to power additional facilities located on the plant property, or be sold off to other markets via the electric grid.
Maine’s new anaerobic digester will encompass nearly 7,500 square feet of real estate. The project intends to break ground between July and August, with the first digester coming online within the year. Both Village Green Ventures and the town of Brunswick hope that their new facility will pave the way for additional cities to adopt the technology. There are currently 180 anaerobic digesters in the US, but only a fraction of them are located within the state of Maine. As more cities look for ways to curb their trash production and produce greener energy, they will start to seriously consider the “killing two birds with one stone” approach offered by W-t-E technology.
Source: Bangor Daily News