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Poo & solar panels

We at LEAP believe it’s important to #recover the #nutrients contained in this poo and many other #biowastes like it. At the moment we focus on food and food waste but we know that recovering nutrients from the other end of the digesting process is at least as important!

Why poo? Because if we can recover the nutrients from organic waste such as discarded food or poo, we can re-use these nutrients for #local #food #growing projects; potentially all types of locally collected #biomass waste can help our food grow better.
Why bother? The main reason is because poo can wait patiently on a pavement for an unsuspecting shoe to share its nutrients with… More seriously though, there are lots of reasons why we should recover it, but our focus is to try and #retain nutrients for local food growing.

What we currently do with poo and other organic waste? Sadly, we either flush it or send it to the big bad #landfill site and forget all about it, or we #incinerate it with all our other crap! In 2017, nearly half of London’s black bin bag waste was organic (food and garden waste).


LEAP has identified the opportunities & social benefits of this biomass waste using #micro #AD #technology and would like to reach out to local authorities / colleges and prisons as the best potential for early adopters in enabling our ‘closed loop’ micro AD technology to mature. Write to us if you think you have a potential project for micro AD in your college canteen or prison garden?

LEAP has been fortunate enough to have received a small pot of funds from SUGI to #research the changing nutrient cycles in our cities but research & development is expensive and we must continue with our struggle from the valley of death...

Which leads onto some cheery news from the workshop, which has been filling up gradually with #secondhand #solar #panels.

Some strange twist of solar fate has been causing me to dash about the countryside collecting re-useable solar panels in readiness for our SUGI project.

2m3 prototype digester undergoing commissioning /trial work with approx. 1 kW PV array for mechanical mixing and solar thermal heating

It seems sad that so many #domestic PV systems are being decommissioned in the UK because the FiT scheme has been killed off/mis-managed by our government, so please don’t forget the 3R’s if you're planning on building a project.

Why would we want to use solar panels when dealing with organic waste?

Because we need heat and energy to enable micro AD technology. Heat can be recovered from #cogeneration as mentioned in Marco’s blog or it can be recovered from sunlight to enable basic digester functions – heat and mixing.

For those who haven’t seen it, try the recent showing from the BBC about climate change featuring David #Attenborough and supporting a new generation of inspirational youngsters who also care such as Greta #Thunberg. Great work!

And finally, a tribute to the great work of Polly Higgins who recently passed away. An author and environmental lobbyist, described in her obituary in the Guardian as, "one of the most inspiring figures in the green movement" and described by the Ecologist magazine as "one of the world’s top ten visionary thinkers". RIP Polly.

Written by Guy Blanch

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