January 2, 2015
By nightfall on Monday, December 29th, 2014, just as the downpour of rain started, we miraculously finished building the Yucatan’s first urban biogas digester. For this digester, we used our Solar CITIES modification to the ARTI design. On the 31st, we modified another Rotoplas tank as a closed digester to take more urban food waste and increase capacity. We made the second tank without cutting or penetrating the water tank itself. Instead, we did all of the work through the screw lid, which was sealed with silicone and bolts and wingnuts. This novel idea will enable members of the Maya community who already use such tanks to irrigate their horticultural plantings to get both gas and liquid fertilizer from the same tank with only marginal extra cost (a couple of tubes, uniseals, nuts and bolts and valves).
We named this sort of urban biogas system in Latin America “Bode-gas” after “Bodega”, which is a small grocery store in an Urban Area, usually in a hispanic neighborhood. Bodegas exist all over Latin America. These urban biogas systems takes what the grocery store produces and turns it into fuel for cooking the grocery store products and fertilizing a new generation of groceries, preferably grown hydroponically and aeroponically on the roof or in the back yard of a bodega, thereby completing the cycle!
This was a truly happy way to ring out the old and ring in the new. Happy New Year!