Green Fuels Research awarded BEIS funding for MISTY research project
Waste from dairies and breweries could be put to good use in fighting climate change, according to scientists at Green Fuels Research Ltd (GFR). The Gloucestershire-based company has been awarded funding under the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) Biomass Feedstocks Innovation Programme for its Microalgae Biomass Sustainability (MISTY) project.
The MISTY project aims to boost yields from algae farming in the UK by co-culturing microalgae with bacteria, using wastewater from the brewing and dairy industries.
The key innovation lies in cultivating microalgal strains in conditions adapted to the UK’s weather by using two bioreactor systems, one taking advantage of natural sunlight during spring and summer and the second using organic compounds present in dairy and brewery wastewater as carbon sources in winter.
According to GFR, MISTY will enable breweries and the dairy sector to dispose of zero-value, environmentally harmful waste streams while sustainably industrialising a high-value bioenergy resource, decarbonising their value chains and combating climate change.
Importantly, the MISTY process doesn’t use drinking-quality water or compete for land with food production. Equally important, by promoting carbon capture, MISTY aligns itself with the Green Industrial Revolution and accelerates the UK’s path to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, while promising to increase the UK’s strategic biomass supply, explained Dr Paul Hilditch, Chief Strategy Officer at Green Fuels.
Green Fuels is working with Wadworth & Co Ltd, an independent regional family brewer and pub company, operating in excess of 150 pubs and brewing beer in the market town of Devizes since 1875.
Now in the fifth generation of ownership by the Bartholomew family, Wadworth & Co is excited to support Green Fuels in their research project, “MISTY” under the Biomass Feedstocks Innovation Programme. We see this research as potentially beneficial in the longer term with the hope an industrial application would potentially bring innovative and or alternative low-cost wastewater treatment solutions to smaller breweries whilst helping to combat climate change, said a spokesperson for the company in a statement.