The initial focus for the company is to provide comprehensive sewage sludge management for WWTPs. WWTP activities are highly regulated with an increasing portion of their operating budgets devoted to the management of sewage sludge. Organic waste solids management processes that offer improved public health and environmental protection at reduced operating costs when compared to present practices, will have great appeal to public agencies, stakeholders and ratepayers. The chart below shows that about 2/3 of the 3.8 million WTPD of processed sewage sludge is spread on the ground where it will decompose into GHGs and many of the troublesome living and synthetic compounds in the residuals that survive biologic based treatment can migrate into soil and groundwater.
Food waste from households, grocery stores, and restaurants as well as food byproducts from food processing plants are estimated to be on the order of 100,000 tons a day in the U.S. This material carries a Btu value estimated to be 20% higher than sewage sludge. With growing demands and regulations to divert organic residuals from landfills, municipal solid waste (MSW) collectors need economically viable and compliant ways to manage this material. A G5S at MSW’s Resource Recovery Facility (MRF) can improve collector’s economics and decrease their environmental footprint by: (i) elimination or reduction grid power to run their MRFs, (ii) elimination of transportation of the food industry waste from MRFs, and (iii) complete destruction of compounds of concern in a thermal process.
Dairy and Beef Cattle Industry
There are an estimated 65,000 dairies in the U.S., and the average dairy size is about 140 cows, these industries generate more than 500,000 WTPD of manure from dairy cows and beef cattle (as each cow or bull produces about 4 x the waste volume as a person produces). It is expected that public health and environmental pressures will continue to mount for regulations to mandate improved manure management to manage and eliminate impacts to water (nitrates and phosphorous-containing compounds), air quality (odor and toxins) and climate (methane and GHG discharges). As regulations come to this market, the G5S will be a desirable solution because of it is a scalable onsite solution that can generate usable electric power and involves no costly and polluting transportation.
Other Agricultural Industries
In addition to the dairy and beef cattle industries discussed above, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) estimates there are another 300,000 tons a day of waste material generated on farms in the United States. This material is comprised of other animal manure (such as swine and poultry) and crop waste. While crop waste contains significant energy (calorific content) it is typically plowed into the ground. However, this material can be utilized as feedstock for a G5S.
The U.S. represents only a portion of the market for the G5S. International markets where (i) health and environmental issues are the greatest, (ii) availability of electricity is limited and/or (iii) biosolids and manure management and disposal options are limited. European Union and Asian nations are market candidates because, in addition to heavy regulation, high energy costs will be an impetus for considering the G5S. The company also believes benefits of the G5S will also be very appealing to developing nations where health issues are rampant and infrastructure is limited.