Energy from waste on a national scale? Life cycle research says its possible
A UCLA study found that harnessing energy from waste could potentially produce large amounts of renewable energy and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The LCA backed study identified that employing all available wastes in the United States is enough to create bioenergy amounting to 3.1 to 3.8 exajoules of renewable energy. Although the percentage is in the single digits, this still signifies an enormous amount of energy - enough to power upward of 82 million American homes. The aim of the research was to determine how waste can be turned into various sources of bioenergy through life cycle assessment, looking at different variations of biomass, all falling in four broad categories of agricultural residue, landfill waste, forestry and animal manure, drawing upon the fields of industrial ecology and energy economics. Access the study here. Read more here.