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[GreenYes] Re: Garbage to energy


<"Municipal and industrial solid waste turns out to be one of the most prominent products available. It has the additional charm of already being collected and transported to central locations.">

I've heard a theory that the "nuclear threat" of the 1980s was cooked up as a way to distract us from the important work begun on Earth Day 1970. They got us busy tilting against ABMs and Star Wars Defense, so global capital could secure its access to every last scrap of the Earth's resources, accelerating sprawl and big box retail, and completing the task of divorcing us from reality.

It has to be ulterior motives, not logic, that would make someone miss the dirty little secret about garbage. It relies on abundant supplies of the very fuel it is intended to replace. Already the people who supply us with that "charming" product are engaging in food riots because we are feeding our cars their grain.

Helen Spiegelman
Zero Waste Vancouver


At 11:55 AM 4/24/2008, amy perlmutter wrote:
From oregon public broadcasting, http://news.opb.org/article/study-finds-garbage-fuel-best-fit-nw/

Study Finds Garbage-To-Fuel Best Fit For NW

By Tom Banse

Olympia, WA  March 17, 2008 8:39 a.m.

Northwest biodiesel and ethanol production is on the rise.  But most of the raw materials for our biofuels still come from far away.

Midwestern corn and soybeans, for example, or canola oil from Canada.  A new study by the Pacific Northwest National Lab suggests the path to truly "homegrown" fuel might lead to the garbage dump.


Six researchers at the National Lab in Richland, Washington investigated how a regional biofuels industry could sustain itself without resorting to imported feedstocks.

Dennis Stiles: "We were a bit surprised to discover that the resource was a bit smaller than our intuition would have told us."

Lead study author Dennis Stiles says farmers have no incentive to switch to oilseeds right now given the current high prices for food crops.

Dennis Stiles: "Municipal and industrial solid waste turns out to be one of the most prominent products available. It has the additional charm of already being collected and transported to central locations."

Stiles says pretty much everything in your garbage except the metal and glass can be chemically converted into liquid fuel.  He says the technology to do that exists, but needs further refinement.

The study calculated that the Northwest could eventually meet 10 to 12 percent of its annual fuel demand from garbage we now throw out.





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