The new Bio-Bee truck is creating a real buzz, it is the first vehicle in the UK to both collect and run on commercial food waste.
Companies in Bristol are being offered the chance to recycle their food waste, with the help of a new biogas truck that will run on the waste they provide. Boston Tea Party and St Monica Trust care homes are among the first companies to sign up to the service.
The Bio-Bee collects food waste and takes it to GENeco’s anaerobic digestion plant, where the waste is processed to remove any plastic and then turned into low carbon biogas. The gas is then used to either burnt to generate renewable electricity, turned into enriched biomethane so it can be injected into the gas grid, or used as a transport fuel by the Bio-Bee or other vehicles.
Charlotte Stamper, project manager at GENeco, explained the thinking behind the name of the new van. “Bees are renowned for the good work they do for the environment, and their daily routine involves collecting valuable natural resources and then bringing them back to a hive to make renewable and nutritious products,” she said. “The Bio-Bee operates the same way. It runs on biomethane that has been produced by the anaerobic digestion of food waste and sewage from houses in Bristol, Bath and the surrounding area.”
The company said the truck boasts a carbon footprint that is around 90 % lower than a diesel equivalent and also results in significantly lower levels of air pollution.
Shelley Wadey, finance director at Boston Tea Party, said using the truck was a logical step for the café chain. “Although we have been recycling our food waste from our six Bristol cafes for three years through GENeco, this is another step forward to make things better by generating a sustainable circular economy”.
The company said there were significant feedstocks available for the Bio-Bee and other bio-gas powered vehicles to draw on, noting that if Bristol recycled all the food waste generated by the city’s residents in a year the Bio-Bee could run every day until the year 3,000.