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Using Waste, Swedish City Cuts Its Fossil Fuel Use (NY Times)

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pinto Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 12:54 PM
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Using Waste, Swedish City Cuts Its Fossil Fuel Use (NY Times)
Using Waste, Swedish City Cuts Its Fossil Fuel Use

By ELISABETH ROSENTHAL
Published: December 10, 2010

KRISTIANSTAD, Sweden When this city vowed a decade ago to wean itself from fossil fuels, it was a lofty aspiration, like zero deaths from traffic accidents or the elimination of childhood obesity.

Kristianstad calculated that it eliminated 64 tons of CO2 emissions annually by using wood pellets to heat a city greenhouse.

But Kristianstad has already crossed a crucial threshold: the city and surrounding county, with a population of 80,000, essentially use no oil, natural gas or coal to heat homes and businesses, even during the long frigid winters. It is a complete reversal from 20 years ago, when all of their heat came from fossil fuels.

But this area in southern Sweden, best known as the home of Absolut vodka, has not generally substituted solar panels or wind turbines for the traditional fuels it has forsaken. Instead, as befits a region that is an epicenter of farming and food processing, it generates energy from a motley assortment of ingredients like potato peels, manure, used cooking oil, stale cookies and pig intestines.

<snip>

Both natural gas and biogas create emissions when burned, but far less than coal and oil do. And unlike natural gas, which is pumped from deep underground, biogas counts as a renewable energy source: it is made from biological waste that in many cases would otherwise decompose in farm fields or landfills and yield no benefit at all, releasing heat-trapping methane into the atmosphere and contributing to global warming.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/11/science/earth/11fossi...
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eleny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 01:36 PM
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1. These people are so determined and have made a lot of progress
I've been "riding around" the town and its outskirts via Google's Street View. It's a lovely area on a sunny day. :hi:
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JohnWxy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 04:10 PM
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2. extremely important post. Anaerobic digestors can produce energy from waste and dramatically reduce
fossil fuel use and attendant GHG emissions.

But there is nothing sexy about shit. so nobody wants to talk about it. Apparently the Swedish are too practical to look the other way when it comes to energy independence from fossil fuel..

"Another plus is that biogas plants can devour vast quantities of manure that would otherwise pollute the air and could affect water supplies."

Article is tantalizingly silent on how much GHG emissions are being reduced right now, but it does say that Sweden is shooting for reductions of GHG of 40% by 2020.


"Having dispensed with fossil fuels for heating, Kristianstad is moving on to other challenges. City planners hope that by 2020 total local emissions will be 40 percent lower than they were in 1990, and that running the city will require no fossil fuel and produce no emissions at all."

(would have recommended but was too late)





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Nihil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-14-10 04:09 AM
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3. It's so sensible that it flies under the radar for most people ...
> Anaerobic digestors can produce energy from waste and dramatically reduce
> fossil fuel use and attendant GHG emissions.

> Another plus is that biogas plants can devour vast quantities of manure
> that would otherwise pollute the air and could affect water supplies.

What's not to like?
:shrug:
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