December 8, 2014

IowaWatch Connection: Turning Garbage Into Gas

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Gabriella Dunn/IowaWatch

What if we could turn our everyday trash into fuel that could power our cars? That time is closer than you think, and Iowa is on the forefront of this new technology. It’s called “trashanol”, turning garbage into gas.

Trashanol boasts one benefit no other biofuel can claim — reducing the impact of landfills and the earth-warming methane gas they produce. Methane is considered to have a major impact on global warming. Methane from landfills makes up roughly 18 percent of all methane emissions in the U.S., according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Dave Elias, landfill superintendent in Iowa City, Iowa, said trashanol has the potential to make a big dent in the landfill industry.

“For us to change the way we are doing landfilling, to quit just burying everything that comes to us in the back of a truck, would be a really major change,” said Dave Elias, the landfill superintendent in Iowa City, Iowa

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