The CCPR authority, responsible for an area centred on La Roche sur Foron, collects sludge, industrial fat and used oil, sending them to the Arvéa sewage works where they are co-digested with waste water during the anaerobic digestion process.
France’s first membrane-separation demonstrator produces methane, which is then filtered to the same standards of purity as mains gas. This biomethane can then be used as a substitute for natural gas (for cooking as well as space and water heating) or as a vehicle fuel. The air and noise pollution performance of this fuel, known as Bio-CNG, is far superior to that of conventional fuels. Bio-CNG will be available at the Saint-Pierre-en-Faucigny fuel station, supplying refuse disposal trucks and other gas-fuelled utility vehicles in particular.
- Zero particulate matter emissions
- Compared with a diesel-fuelled vehicle, nitrous oxide emissions are 80% lower, noise is abated by 50% and greenhouse gas emissions are reduced by 80%.
- Enough biogas is produced to satisfy the year-round daily needs of five refuse disposal trucks (equivalent to 40 vehicles).
Stages of the project
CCPR representatives, aware of the atmospheric pollution problems affecting the Pays Rochois area, have risen to the challenge of producing renewable energy locally.
Areas of activity
Membrane purification performance tests conducted by Prodéval delivered conclusive results, proving the demonstrator to be an effective technological solution with low operating costs. These results have encouraged the project’s backers to continue investing. A parallel project named Equilibre is organising a community of carriers interested in using clean fuel. The idea of linking the two projects rapidly emerged, and CCPR representatives are steering the anaerobic digestion towards bio-CNG production.
The innovative nature of the technology used has presented a number of challenges. Firstly, the French energy and environmental agency ADEME (which oversees the plant licensing process) is eager to be able to replicate the solution in other areas, and has imposed stringent requirements in terms of biomethane quality indicators. As the project is intended to serve as an example, the innovation process had to be flawless.
Secondly, the project’s backers had to deal with partners that doubted the new technology’s efficiency and reliability. This resistance to change will be overcome by the results obtained as the plant enters operation.