BMW announces new program to convert landfill gas to hydrogen

BMW converts landfill gas to hydrogen

Companies have been hard at work to jump on the electric vehicle bandwagon. And while it’s thoroughly proven that EVs are still suffering from practicality issues, EVs are essentially the band-aids for the broken legs of the automobile’s oil consumption and environmental problems. Hydrogen however on the other hand, is arguably the solution to all of our renewable resource issues.

Manufacturers like BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Honda have always been leading the automobile industry with its research and development in hydrogen fuel cells. BMW specifically, in light of their efforts for sustainable living that we provided you coverage for earlier in the year, has just announced that they will be embarking on a new study to find ways to convert gasses emitted from landfills into hydrogen.

Because hydrogen industry has yet to truly skyrocket in terms of infrastructure, but more relevantly the automobile industry, reasons behind this are due to the fact that we don’t exactly have the technology that makes the extraction and production of pure hydrogen financially feasible. So that’s why BMW is embarking on their study.

As part of the program, methane gas from landfills has been collected from local landfills around BMW’s Munich headquarters. The gas is then claned, compressed, and used to power more than 50% of BMW’s total energy requirements. In 2009, the boffins and BMW took the project a little further and invested $12 million in its landfill gas program.

“This landfill gas-to-hydrogen project at BMW will seek to demonstrate a first-of-its-kind solution that will serve as a model for other private sector companies,” said SCRA CEO Bill Mahoney. “Projects like these further the Knowledge Economy of South Carolina, and I am delighted to be working, together with our partners, to launch this important project on the grounds of a major South Carolina manufacturer. I am confident that this solution to combine renewably-generated hydrogen with clean, efficient fuel cell technology will improve productivity, reduce environmental pollutants and relieve electrical power demand from the grid and am optimistic that it will be replicated nationally.”

– By: Chris Chin