Cattle for beef production on feedlots produce manure that can be damaging to the environment (pixbay)

Cattle for beef production on feedlots produce manure that can be damaging to the environment (pixbay)

Could biological waste be the Okanagan’s newest power source?

Waste products may be used to create clean energy

The Okanagan may be suitable for the implementation of a novel Carbon Neutral Energy system.

A study was conducted to assess the amount of biomass produced in the Okanagan each year to determine if a system that converts waste into energy would be a worthwhile investment.

Biomass is natural waste that can be composted or burned like wood, animal waste, food waste, and sewage.

The initiative is aimed at preventing waste from producing green house gases or from being stored on large areas of land, like landfills.

It was concluded that the Okanagan Valley produces 1,527,010 wet tonnes of biomass each year, which is a promising result for the initiative.

A promising aspect of the study is the current lack of use for human and animal waste. Animal waste and wastewater could be converted to energy using the same technology.

The waste would be converted to fuel which would then be burned to produce energy. The energy would then be used for either heat or electricity.

The assessment of biomass production in the Okanagan was conducted by the Okanagan Sustainability Leadership Council and the Regional District of Central Okanagan in conjunction with the Associated Environmental Consultants Inc. has promising results.

Further research is required to determine whether the Okanagan valley is eligible for the designation of a Bioeconomic zone.

Ideally, Okanagan’s waste products could one day be turned into Carbon Neutral energy.

READ MORE: Summerhill Winery proposes college for sustainable food production

READ MORE: Penticton plans to curb greenhouse gas emissions following 22% increase since 2011


@Rangers_mom
Jacqueline.Gelineau@kelownacapnews.com

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