A new biogas demonstration plant to be unveiled in Singapore this September
In the past several years, Asia has been leading the race in clean energy, becoming the standard that western nations should strive for, especially now that we’re seeing the dangers of oil volatility. Some of the latest developments in renewable energy can be found in Singapore where companies are working towards generating electricity from food waste and used sludge water.
Global anaerobic digestion technologies provider Anaergia has recently partnered with Singapore’s national water agency PUB in a project aiming to produce biogas with the help of anaerobic bacteria.
The way that it works is that the used water and food waste will be placed in an oxygen-free tank, known as the anaerobic digester, which is where the bacteria will break down the organic matter and convert it into bioenergy.
At last week’s Singapore International Water Week Technology and Innovation Summit, Anaergia announced that a demonstration facility within the Ulu Pandan Water Reclamation Plant will be completed this September. This will be the first of its kind in Singapore.
“This demonstration plant aims to validate the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of co-digestion implementation in Singapore,” explains PUB Chief Technology Officer Harry Seah.
If the plan is executed successfully, the patented Anaergia process will be applied in other water treatment plants, and could potentially help Singapore become self-sufficient in energy.
Last year, around 788,600 tonnes of food went to waste and only 13 percent of it was recycled. Implementing this new process will significantly reduce food and water waste and generate energy without harming the environment and alleviate dependency on oil.
Despite the limited supply, some argue that there’s still enough oil to power the globe for the next few centuries, thus the endless amount of investment in oil drilling and exploration. Other countries are looking to natural gas as a fuel subsidy, such as Iraq which currently has a contract with UnaOil to rehabilitate gas compressor stations in the West Qurna region.
But the low oil prices are paving a way for energy companies to take advantage of decreasing costs associated with renewable energy production. The time will come when the world runs out of fossil fuels, so global economies would do better by focusing less on oil and gas and a little more on bioenergy and other renewables.