Waste from milk factories and breweries could be put to good use in fighting climate change, according to scientists at Green Fuels Research. The Gloucestershire-based company has won funding under the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s Biomass Feedstocks Innovation Programme for its Microalgae Biomass Sustainability project (MISTY). The project aims to boost yields from algae farming in the UK by co-culturing microalgae with bacteria, using wastewater from the brewing and dairy industries.
The key innovation lies in cultivating microalgal strains in conditions adapted to the UK’s weather by using two bioreactor systems, one taking advantage of natural sunlight during spring and summer and the second using organic compounds present in dairy and brewery wastewater as carbon sources in winter. MISTY will enable breweries and the dairy sector to dispose of zero-value, environmentally harmful waste streams while sustainably industrialising a high-value bioenergy resource, decarbonising their value chains and combating climate change.
”Importantly, the MISTY process doesn’t use drinking-quality water or compete for land with food production,” explained Green Fuels Chief Strategy Officer Paul Hilditch, “while promising to increase the UK’s strategic biomass supply.” Equally important, by promoting carbon capture, MISTY aligns itself with the Green Industrial Revolution and accelerates the UK’s path to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Green Fuels is working with Wadworth & Co, an independent regional family brewer and pub company, operating in excess of 150 pubs and brewing beer in the market town of Devizes since 1875. “Now in the fifth generation of ownership by the Bartholomew family, Wadworth and Company Ltd. is excited to support Green Fuels in their research project, “MISTY” under the Biomass Feedstocks Innovation Programme. We see this research as potentially beneficial in the longer term with the hope an industrial application would potentially bring innovative and or alternative low-cost wastewater treatment solutions to smaller breweries whilst helping to combat climate change,” said a spokesperson for the company.
About Green Fuels
Green Fuels is a pioneer in renewable fuels. Founded in 2003, Green Fuels has supplied biofuel equipment with aggregate capacity equating to $500bn in fuel sales to customers in more than 80 countries. Identifying aviation and marine as strategic fuel markets of the future, Green Fuels Research was established in 2014 to develop IP in these areas. The group has attracted £12m in direct and indirect research grant funding to date, with R&D facilities in Berkeley, Gloucestershire.
Green Fuels was awarded a Royal Warrant of Appointment to HRH the Prince of Wales in 2013 and has participated in many pioneering events in its field including the first 100% biofuel-powered jet flight and the first 100% biofuel-powered train.
Green Fuels is headquartered in Gloucestershire, UK, with offices in London, Mumbai, Muscat and Rio de Janeiro.
Julian Beach, Business Development Director
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