The Bio-Bug runs on methane gas separated from carbon dioxide following anaerobic digestion – where bugs break down biodegradable material to produce methane in the absence of oxygen.
Geneco claims waste flushed from 70 homes is enough to power the Bio-Bug for a year, based on annual mileage of 16 000km.
Mohammed Saddiq, general manager of Geneco, says, ‘At the moment we are using waste flushed down the toilets in homes in Bristol to power the Bio-Bug, but it won’t be long before the energy will also be generated through the treatment of food waste when we start recycling it at our sewage works.’
It is understood that the car would be started by petrol before switching to methane. When the methane tank runs dry, the car changes to its petrol tank.
In Sweden 11 500 cars are already believed to be running on bio-methane, according to Geneco, which says 18 million m3 of biogas is produced at the Bristol sewage treatment works every year.
The Bio-Bug does 8.5km per m3 of biogas and 19 000 tonnes of CO2 would avoid the atmosphere if all the biogas at Geneco’s Avonmouth plant was used, it says.
In six months’ time, the efficiency and environmental impact of the car will be tested.