April 12 (Renewables Now) - Southern California Gas Co (SoCalGas) has been awarded a USD-3-million (EUR 2.7m) grant by the California Energy Commission (CEC) for the next stage of development of the hydrothermal processing (HTP) technology in wastewater treatment, the US natural gas utility announced on Thursday.
The HTP solution can double the amount of renewable energy created from decomposing organic matter at wastewater treatment plants. Greenhouse gas emissions are three times lower compared to traditional anaerobic digestions, while the costs are halved. HTP uses heat and pressure to capture 86% of the energy locked in the waste and only 14% to process it, SoCalGas said.
The utility will pilot the project at the Central Contra Costa Sanitary District (Central San) wastewater treatment plant in Martinez, California. In addition to the CEC, private participants have also contributed funds to the undertaking along with SoCalGas itself.
SoCalGas said that the HTP technology has the potential to convert not only wastewater, but also landfill, forestry and food waste into carbon-neutral renewable energy.
(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.89)