Innovative Israeli Company Turns Trash Into Biofuel
by Shiryn Ghermezian
An Israeli company has developed an outdoor biodigester unit that converts trash into clean, renewable biofuel, JSpace News reported on Friday.
HomeBioGas created the family-size TevaGas (TG) units to generate clean energy and fertilizer through anaerobic digestion of organic waste, such as food and animal manure. A single unit produces enough clean cooking gas daily for three meal and 10 liters of organic liquid fertilizer, according to the company’s website.
The backyard units, which come in easy-to-assemble kits, are currently being used in the Israeli Bedouin community of Umm Batin to convert trash into biogas for cooking, heating and lighting, and also organic liquid crop fertilizer.
The biodigesters caught the attention of United Nations’ Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon when he visited Israeli President Reuven Rivlin last October during Sukkot and saw a demonstration of a machine used by Bedouin families.
“He got very excited and told us, ‘Millions of women and children die each year due to indoor smoke from open fires. This is just the thing they need. The UN should be purchasing these units!‘” HomeBioGas Marketing Director Ami Amir told the online news publication ISRAEL21c. “He asked us to be in touch with the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization to see where and when our systems could be deployed.”
HomeBioGas has received inquiries from many countries interested in their innovative product. Amir told ISRAEL21c they received orders from distributors in Australia, Nigeria and Costa Rica that want to set up demo installations. He said, “About 70 different countries are interested in establishing distributorships. So evidently we are answering a need.”
The Israeli government purchased the TevaGas units for Umm Batin and another Bedouin community in the Negev, JSpace News said. The Peres Center for Peace in Jaffa recently purchased units for communities in the West Back that do not have trash pick-up.
Former Israeli Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz, who was in office when the units were first installed in Israel and abroad in the Dominican Republic, said the biodigesters encourage goodwill.
“We found a way to generate cooperation with the Bedouin population from remote communities who feel that as a result of this, the country cares about them,” he explained. “Therefore, the chances are great that this project will succeed and become a model for the world.”