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The Train is Coming

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While biofuels and renewable energy are all the rage these days, the WW industry can claim to be the original biofuel producer. Since the early part of the century, WWTPs have been producing digester gas from the anaerobic digestion of wastewater solids and utilizing that biofuel as a heat source. While the industry may have been an original producer, it is threatened with being run over by the biofuel train. In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) the Clean Water State Revolving Loan Fund received 3.8B in federal funding. While this money provided the necessary fund to conduct many important projects, it pales in comparison to the 16.2B in federal funding for renewable energy from the Department of Energy. If the WW industry does not identify its role in the renewable energy and biofuel market, it will be left behind as priorities are assigned for public infrastructure improvements. The biofuel industry has arrived and will develop quickly over the next 3 to 5 years as plants move from demonstration scale to full scale. By having an understanding of the opportunities available to the WW industry, WWTPs will be able to benefit from this new industry while also continuing to lead as practical environmentalists.
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Keywords: Biodiesel; Beneficial Use; Biofuel; Digestion; Energy; FOG; Grease Interceptor; Renewable

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-01-01

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