February 20, 2016
Solar CITIES ventures deeper into the sustainable tourism industry with this signature biodigester at the Lone Oak Lodge in West Virginia, and ecotourism destination run by and built with Brock Smith.
Brock writes that this sustainable tourism initiative, which has home biogas at its center, “is dedicated to pointing West Virginia in a new direction for economic development and a better quality of life for the state we love and the people we love!”
West Virginia’s Basement Biodigester on the New River in Prince is the fourth one that Solar CITIES has built. We don’t know if there are any others in the world, but each time we build one we get more and more confident that these “domestic dragons” belong in the house with us, like house pets, rather than banished to the “dog house” outdoors. We already expend a lot of money and energy insulating and heating our homes and since biodigesters need to be kept warm (being animals, after all, rather than machines!) it makes sense to “do this at home, in the home”.
Besides being kept warm by being in the basement, this digester benefits from two additional heat sources:
1) PEX coils (100 feet per tank) inside the tank are connected to the water heater so that we can divert hot water through them whenever we want before it makes its way to the sink or shower.
2) The clothes dryer hot air duct first goes to the bottom of an insulated box that surrounds the digester tanks and then vents to the outside from a duct on the top of the box. This means every time the dryer is used an envelope of hot air is created around the digesters.