Anaerobic digestion and composting are excellent ways to reduce the strain on the environment from greenhouse gases and overcrowded landfills. This is a progressive and futuristic way to handle waste management today. In the futuristic movie, Mad Max 2, Beyond Thunder Dome, an entire city was fueled with the methane gas that was derived from pig feces. The reality of such a system that can exist based on this type of fuel is now an actual possibility.
When products break down in composting heaps, they break down with aerobic digestion. This is a process that includes air. In anaerobic digestion, the absence of air breaks down the compost. The result is rich liquor like substance, which is great for fertilization, and the gas that it gives off, if harnessed can be used as a powerful and environmentally friendly fuel.
Anaerobic digesters perform this process to treat waste. The system harnesses the energy to prevent the fumes from escaping and breaks down the decomposing compost. This process can be completed with products such as human and animal waste as well as organic waste such as vegetable and grass clippings. This process reduces the masses of organic waste that would simply sit in landfill sites and creates valuable natural resources. Vehicles and machinery can be run from this type of green energy. It’s referred to as green energy because it’s renewable and environmentally friendly.
In the process, dangerous or non-organic matter is removed from the waste and the material is broken down. There are four stages of anaerobic digestion. The compost matter goes first through hydrolysis, then acidogenesis, actogenesis and finally methanogenesis, which break down the matter further through each process. The sludge component that results from anaerobic digestion is a fantastic fertilizer product and all that’s left after the sludge and gas have been used is a small amount of ash. The quantity of ash compared to the original amount is substantially less.
With advances such as these, our planet’s future is a bright one. Utilizing our waste and turning it into energy is a great way to treat the environment better. Anaerobic digestion and composting is still early in its usage and is currently being used to power generators and create heat and can definitely help reduce waste and make our air cleaner.