£600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Our transport is heavily oil-based. What are the alternatives?

Moderator: Peak Moderation

Post Reply
User avatar
Mark
Posts: 1384
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:48 am
Location: NW England

£600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by Mark »

A new bio-refinery that will convert non-recyclable household waste into aviation fuel will be built on the banks of the Mersey:
https://lbndaily.co.uk/600m-mersey-bio- ... -800-jobs/
kenneal - lagger
Site Admin
Posts: 12589
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 2:35 am
Location: Newbury, Berkshire
Contact:

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by kenneal - lagger »

That means that they will be converting fossil fuel into plastic and then back into fossil fuel and then putting it in to probably the worst place that it could go to cause climate changing pollution, the stratosphere. It wouldn't be quite so bad if it was made into tractor fuel to produce food.
Action is the antidote to despair - Joan Baez
User avatar
adam2
Site Admin
Posts: 8281
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2007 5:49 pm
Location: North Somerset

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by adam2 »

Yes but it will allow one or more airlines to say "fly with us, we are clean and green, because we use fuel recycled* from waste"
And it might also allow makers and retailers of plastic tat to say "can be recycled into vital fuel"

Both the airlines and the plastic tat industries are suffering from an image problem at present and this is a good way of greenwashing both industries.

Less plastic and less flying would be preferable.

*0.01% of fuel, on selected routes only. We are working towards increasing this and other green programes.
"Installers and owners of emergency diesels must assume that they will have to run for a week or more"
kenneal - lagger
Site Admin
Posts: 12589
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 2:35 am
Location: Newbury, Berkshire
Contact:

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by kenneal - lagger »

It is just Greenwash, which probably helped them get planning permission, and they probably make more money out of aviation spirit than they would from tractor fuel. It's a no brainer from their point of view.
Action is the antidote to despair - Joan Baez
User avatar
Mark
Posts: 1384
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:48 am
Location: NW England

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by Mark »

Agree with all the points above....

However, modern living means that we have the reality of piles of non-recyclable plastic household waste....
In an ideal world, we'd sort out the packaging industry, but until we do, better to convert this waste stream into something useful ?
Rather than incinerate it, or bury it in landfill....?

Agree that aviation fuel isn't the best product, but better than making it from crude oil ?
Again, in an ideal world the aviation industry will move to other technologies, but we're not there yet....
Imagine that tractors use diesel, but think I've heard mention that electric tractors are currently being developed ?

As Adam2 says, the danger is that this technology will be used as a reason not to make the fundamental changes needed....
It's a difficult one...
User avatar
BritDownUnder
Posts: 880
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 12:02 pm
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by BritDownUnder »

I could not see anywhere where it said explicitly that the waste was plastic but I suppose it probably is. I would guess it is waste from non-recycling rubbish bins that is not magnetically sortable or large enough pieces of plastic to be manually removed from the waste stream. I would have thought that almost any modern plastic can be recycled if it can be purified enough. That's the problem is separating the different plastics I suppose.

I am curious about the word bio though. To me it implies a biological process or biological type of waste maybe food waste. I will have to research more about this company and process when I get this time but don't discount it out of hand. There are a lot of things you can do with organic chemistry in turning one molecule into another if you have enough energy on your side.
G'Day cobber!
kenneal - lagger
Site Admin
Posts: 12589
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 2:35 am
Location: Newbury, Berkshire
Contact:

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by kenneal - lagger »

The use of the prefix "bio" is just part of the Greenwashing process to obtain planning permission and acceptance in the community and with the government.
Action is the antidote to despair - Joan Baez
User avatar
BritDownUnder
Posts: 880
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 12:02 pm
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia

Re: £600m Mersey bio-refinery will create 800 jobs

Post by BritDownUnder »

kenneal - lagger wrote: Sat Feb 20, 2021 2:35 pm The use of the prefix "bio" is just part of the Greenwashing process to obtain planning permission and acceptance in the community and with the government.
I did some research on this company and their process is the Fischer-Tropsch process that is quite an old and proven process. It involves burning a material that contains a high percentage of carbon in limited oxygen environment producing hydrogen and carbon monoxide (and probably a lot of other carbon containing molecules). These are then reacted under high temperatures and a catalyst to form alkanes (i.e. hydrocarbons) and water.
The main drawback to the F-T process is that it requires energy and in most cases extra hydrogen that the material feedstock sometimes cannot provide. Given that there could be lots of hydrogen and renewable heat in the future to drive the F-T reaction I would not discount it.

Where the bio comes from is still a mystery and as you say it is probably greenwashing. My own opinion on this process is that it is getting rid of a waste stream and making something useful so as long of the products are used where renewables cannot easily be substituted at the moment it probably is a good idea.
G'Day cobber!
Post Reply