Waste food at the Air Force Academy is turned into pulp then converted into methane in anaerobic digesters and used to heat boilers, create selectivity, and power vehicles. Thus, waste that used to go into landfills is being reused.
“About 2-3 percent of the nation’s energy goes to treating wastewater and water,” said Pat Evans, CDM Smith’s vice president. “Most of the energy that’s used is for pumping the water and aerating it. We’re trying to get wastewater treatment plants to become energy neutral or energy producers instead of energy consumers. One step toward that goal is capturing energy from food waste through anaerobic digestion.”
Unfortunately, this pilot project ends soon. Let’s hope what the Air Force has learned from it will be used in future renewable energy projects.