And finally… Gas made from cheese to heat hundreds of UK homes

cheeseHundreds of homes in Cumbria will be heated using biogas produced from the cheese-making process from next month.

A government-backed green energy plant in the area will start producing gas from cheddar manufacturing waste, The Telegraph reports.

Whey and other residue from cheese production at the Lake District Creamery will be processed into biogas and fed in the gas grid, and the company will receive millions of pounds in subsidies for doing so.

The biogas is produced by pumping liquid whey residues left over from the cheese-making, together with water that is used to clean down equipment, into a giant tank. Bacteria then feed on the fats and sugars in the cheese residues producing “biogas” – a mixture of methane and other gases

According to the company that built the plant, Clearfleau, the total amount of gas that will be fed into the grid each year would meet the needs of 4000 homes. However, about 60 percent of that will be used for the creamy’s own use, leaving the equivalent of 1600 homes’ annual gas usage circulating to homes and businesses in rural Cumbria.

Developer Lake Districts Biogas is funding the project, and will receive about £2 million a year in government subsidies for doing so.

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