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Biogas: energy in waste


ISDND type biogas storage centre (non-hazardous waste storage facility) at Sonzay (37), France © SITA France / Yves Soulabaille

Although methanisation is growing fastest in the agricultural sector, there is growth in other sectors as well. For instance, in Jordan, the Samra wastewater plant treats waste water and converts waste sludge into biogas. This facility, which operates using cutting-edge technology, is capable of producing nearly all the energy required for its operation; it currently produces 95% of its own energy requirement! In Sweden, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT developed the Bio Simplex solution that allows production of biogas using the organic waste recovered from the food industry. As a result, 20 machines have been installed throughout the country. Since 2014, Paris has been experimenting with the waste collected from restaurants. The collected waste is sent to a specialised centre for methanisation. According to the energy predictions forecast by Ademe, the French Energy Agency, biogas could provide France with “3 to 3.5% of energy production by 2030 and 2050, and half of the city’s gas will be sourced from methanisation by 2050.”

This challenge is expected to be high on the agenda of topics for discussion at the Cop21 Climate Conference that will be held in France in November 2015 and which should lead to the adoption of an international agreement to define the framework of a transition to resilient, low carbon territories and economic models.