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One of the fastest growing problems facing most developed economies in the last fifty years, and many newly industrializing ones, has been the growth of municipal solid waste (MSW) – the refuse of increasingly affluent urban societies – disposal of which usually falls to local government institutions at city or district level. Local authorities have relied increasingly on landfill to dispose of this waste; but this has proved both expensive and environmentally problematic. Local populations have resisted such sites; but more remote locations have threatened natural habitats and raised transport costs.
Many countries have resorted to incineration to solve this problem; but in a period of rising energy prices, this has proved expensive; and is still causing environmental problems, with the result that this approach is now being widely rejected. Various autoclave technologies have been explored, but this approach has rarely been successfully implemented on an industrial scale.
In the face of these difficulties, Greenworld Fuels, a company established three years ago, has researched and developed an innovative approach which is highly cost-effective, providing a unique solution to the acute environmental problems involved, that treats the biomass component of MSW and converts it into ethanol, primary use being gasoline substitute. Local authorities therefore avoid the cost and environmental damage of landfill or incineration. This process is designed to be modular and therefore can be scaled up to any waste stream capacity.
The solution comprises initial waste sorting and primary shredding; and then a continuous (24/7) process, using a steam injection technology developed by Greenworld Fuels. The waste is broken down into suitably purified bio-mass. This is then subject to unique micro-organism technology to produce ethanol.
The company currently has offices in London, Moscow, St-Petersburg, Sau-Paulo and a manufacturing facility in Riga.