Oil and gas technology: gas from human waste?

Part of the Oil and Gas Technology series

Here’s some good news that stinks. Literally.

According to an article on BBC, companies might start using human waste as gas.

The article claims that by 2020, 15 percent of energy the UK produces has to be renewable. So they are looking to derive power from "sewage waste."

This apparently isn’t a new process either. Records have been found from the Assyrians in the 10th Century and the Persians in the 16th Century, which show that human waste was used as a way to heat bath water. (Although I’d really rather not want to know what kind of paper it was written on.)

Sounds pretty good, right? So what’s blocking up this process?

It’s expensive! It costs a lot to clean up this gas to make it useable for energy.

And what’s the number two reason this hasn’t hit the fan?

Our own prejudices.

People are worried about the smell (although it would be cleaned up). And beyond that, people think it’s a little gross using human waste for energy.

But I say, why not? After all, sh** happens.

What do you think about using human waste as an energy source?

By Jessica Livingston

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