Discussion in 'The big picture' started by milifestyle, Sep 16, 2014.
Where does it fit with Permaculture Ethos ?
Get a yield(since we have farms for this stuff, they're just called dumps or tips), share surplus(surplus methane), problems are solutions(anaerobic waste creates this surplus methane which can be used for heating). I'm just glad that somebody in my area finally figured this out and we are capturing methane at our dump for use as a fuel.
if the cellulose to ethanol projects work out much that is currently considered waste and either burned or composted may first be sent to the ethanol plant instead.
i'm currently doubtful that the practice will turn out good for the farms/gardens in the end because we desperately need more carbon in the soil. taking any percentage of the stover/stalks/leftovers may just end up depleting the topsoil even faster.
some processes generate something like biochar, i'm of mixed feeling on that too. in a warming world do you really need blacker farm fields? aside from the fact that any particle taken into the air that would later fall on snow/glaciers will add to snow/glacier loss.
sorry, i'm on a dog of a slow connection, please summarize contents of video links if you expect me to understand your comments here.
Eric's video is about Sweden's importing waste and burning it for energy ... however I can't watch it either as the youtube channel states "The uploader has not made this video available in your country".
Sorry, didn't realise it wasn't available in some countries... but if you search Youtube there are other video's...
At first the concept looks like something else that adds to carbon pollution - and gives a license to produce, consume and destroy... but I have read about closed loop combustion options where smoke and particulates are cycled back into the system as fuel and combustion is enhanced by oxygen injection and with Sweden focusing mainly on Reducing, Reusing, Recycling and only THEN eliminating waste by creating fuel rather than burying it - the ash can then be recycled as well - metal, etc...
I've always had the idea in the back of my mind, but always thought it would aid consumption, cause more pollution than other "dirty" forms of Electricity etc... I also felt it didn't fit with Permaculture ethos... but with the technology I have been reading about - I've been giving it more thought and wondering how it would fit in with community energy projects.
I use HOLA,(VPN / unblocker) its free
Im sure there is others
ah, thank you for the description, ok, i've read about that in the last year.
my off-the-top-of-my head response is that the current world desperately needs carbon sinks. landfills may digest some of the organic material in them and turn it into methane (which can be captured and used), but much of the organic material buried will be there for many years.
compare that to a recycling of lawn/yard/garden/farm waste program where it gets composted and put back on the ground rather quickly. how much of that carbon is sequestered and for how long (in comparison to the landfill)?
so far the best carbon sequestration method is to make biochar and then make sure the biochar is buried deeply enough that it doesn't increase the surface soil temperature. you can get fuels from biochar production so it isn't a loss and any extra heat can be used for other purposes too.
my own local low tech method of recycling yard/garden wastes is to feed it to the worms as much as i can, but i know i'm not doing much to sequester carbon, it just keeps me from having to haul/bring in other materials for the same purpose.
While we need carbon sinks we also need to fully utilise the resources we have extracted and this is an example. If the rubbish was not used for the heating then some other source of energy would need to be used so its a win in that respect.
As for the composting not being a long term carbon sink, it starts a loop so you don't need to source inputs constantly and so you use less to produce the same while building soil fertility and biota.
I have been around processing biomass and projects to process urban waste. You have many streams of waste at your local tip and it will all come down to how progressive your local government is and how much space they have. At the end of the day it all comes down to $. You can high temp process plastics (PVC's are an issue), woody biomass be it fresh plant matter or construction/pallet wood wastes. The good thing with plastics is they are full of energy and convert to a fraction of the size greatly reducing landfill area needed or reusing that carbon as a low grade carbon black. Using modern cyclonic thermal oxidisers you can treat emissions with little end issues. But the big issue at urban waste sites is having so many different materials coming in, that sorting is a major cost headache. All heat treatments can/should be used to produce industrial heat energy. In the next few years I hope to see a series of large scale processing/biochar/energy sites focused on construction/pallet wood wastes in Australia.
Thanks, Rob & others... Sorry for not replying sooner. My messages from the forum keep going to my Spam folder.
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