Treating brewery wastewater for renewable energy boost

Global Water Engineering says breweries can achieve massive potential improvements from green projects.

One of Asia’s biggest brewers, Beer Thai, installed an anaerobic and aerobic wastewater treatment project at its Kamphaeng Phet plant in Thailand.

Currently, the plant produces up to 30,000Nm3 of biogas a day, at 76 per cent CH4 – equivalent to more than 20,000 litres a day of fuel oil.

The equipment provided by GEW utilises wastewater from the brewery to derive renewable energy.

Similar waste- to-energy projects have also been completed for other major brewers in the Asia-Pacific, including Carlsberg in Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, Laos and Sri Lanka; Heineken in Vietnam, China, Indonesia and New Caledonia; San Miguel in the Philippines, Thailand, China and Hong Kong;   Boonrawd (Singha beer) in Thailand and China; and the $A120 million Bluetongue brewery in Australia.

The Thai plant – with a capacity of 17,000 m3/day wastewater and maximum of 82,500 kg/d COD – not only generates valuable quantities of green energy, but also achieves water purities with a minimum of 98 to 99 percent organic waste removal.

With GEW’s anaerobic treatment, the brewery managed to significantly reduce the brewery’s carbon footprint by avoiding the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

The wastewater passes through several pre-treatment steps before entering three GWE ANUBIX-B anaerobic methane reactors in which the wastewater’s organic content is digested by bacteria in a closed reactor, degrading the compounds and converting them into biogas and cleaned effluent. Biogas from the process is collected and reused as renewable energy in the brewery’s steam boilers.

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