Welsh Water begins waste to fuel project

A scheme has been set up by Welsh Water to turn sewage into a zero-emission fuel for use in low emission vehicles.

The project will see biogas waste converted into hydrogen fuel. It sees by-products of the wastewater treatment process, which produces microbe-rich sewage, able to be used for fuel.

Welsh Water is running the project with construction firm Costain and local authorities across south Wales, with the hope it can power the entire fleet of company vehicles with hydrogen fuel. The move would save 9,000 tonnes of carbon.

The project will also explore overall demand for hydrogen vehicles across fleets, especially for local authority waste collection, HGVs, tractors and public transport buses.

Biogas is produced when the sewage is broken down by bacteria, which turns it into a type of compost, which produces the possible fuel source.

Dubbed ‘Make Your Poo Work For You’, it has been awarded £60,000 by Innovate UK to take the scheme forward.

Welsh Water’s director of environment, Tony Harrington, said: “This sewage-to-hydrogen fuel project is at the forefront of the innovation we need to pursue to meet these ambitious targets – and the funding from Innovate UK will help us on the way to de-carbonising our fleet of tankers.”

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