(625m) Waste to Watts: Positioning Urban-Based Organic Wastes As Valuable Feedstocks to Fuel and Chemical Production

Authors: 
Fortela, D. L., University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Mikolajczyk, A., University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Hernandez, R., University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Zappi, M., University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Holmes, W., University of Louisiana at Lafayette

This study focuses on simulating the potential of organic wastes from a city to be feedstock for conventional and emerging green technologies envisioned to be operated locally near the source.  Inherent to the growth of cities is the increased consumption of energy and materials in various developmental activities all of which inevitably produce wastes. Our city of Lafayette in the state of Louisiana in USA is no exception to this pattern. Looking through the lens of green engineering, we found that the wastewater management and the waste solids management sectors of the city have technical aspects that may be improved or be utilized to render a greener city. Four selected technologies – lipid accumulation, anaerobic digestion, transesterification, and in-situ trans-esterification – will be integrated in a centralized facility within the city to convert key city-generated wastes into biogas, biodiesel and biosolids while maintaining a positive environmental impact. This proposed system will catalyze the engagement of people in the transformation of wastes into multiple valuable products through the innovative integration of existing and emerging conversion technologies.  The proposed paradigm will optimize carbon source utilization via the reinvention of waste treatment facilities into urban-based biorefineries.