Two new large recycling vehicles – which are powered entirely from the food waste they collect – have launched to service cafés, restaurants, schools, and offices across the West.
They are the latest addition to the expanding fleet of ‘Bio-Bees’, which have served Bristol since 2017, and have been affectionately nicknamed Buzz Lightyear and Buzz Aldrin by the public, following a poll by their creators at renewable energy and recycling company, GENeco.
The two newcomers are being deployed wider across Bristol, Bath and North East Somerset, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire, and South Wales.
The food waste collected by the Bio-Bees is taken to GENeco’s anaerobic digestion facility in Avonmouth, where it is turned into clean biomethane fuel used to sustainably power local homes and – in a UK first – the Bio-Bees themselves, reducing their wheel-to-wheel carbon dioxide and particulate matter emissions by over 90%, than if they were to be powered by diesel.
Francis Marsh, head of liquid waste resources at GENeco, said: “Following the success of our Bio-Bees operating in Bristol and the positive changes they have made to the local environment, we are really excited to expand the service to collect and recycle food waste from more businesses across a larger region.
“Every year an estimated 20 million tonnes of greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere across the UK from food waste that is sent to landfill to rot, instead of being recycled. The Bio-Bees allow us to harvest the valuable energy and nutrients in food waste and use it to power homes and vehicles in a more sustainable and ethical way.” GENeco notes that, following the momentum generated by the recent IPCC report and the successful bid for Bristol to be named a Gold Sustainable Food City, businesses with foodservice facilities are more interested than ever in being sustainable, carbon-neutral and sending less waste to landfill.