Reuters - Video

EDITION: U.S. | U.K. | IN

Technology

Urban algae turns wastewater into energy

Monday, 03 Dec, 2012 - 02:13

Dec. 3 - While governments discuss new environmental policies at the Doha Climate Change Conference, private industry is also looking to the future with new technologies to produce clean, inexpensive power. American company OriginOil has joined forces with French firm Ennesys to develop a process that converts wastewater from commercial buildings into energy. Jim Drury reports.

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

STORY: US company OriginOil and French firm Ennesys have joined forces to launch a unique energy-generating project. They're producing algae from wastewater in a high-rise Paris office block and turning it into energy and clean water. The wastewater comes from the block's bathrooms, kitchens, and toilets. It's the medium in which the algae is then grown in flat panel bioreactors on the building's facade. Ennesys CEO Pierre Tauzinat says it may just be slime to some, but to his company, algae is the future of clean, inexpensive fuel. SOUNDBITE (English) CEO OF ENNESYS, PIERRE TAUZINAT, SAYING: "Waste water is full of nutriments and we prepare the waste water in a way that phytoplancton, microalgae will nourish themselves, from everything that inside this waste water. At the end of the day, what we will have is two things, biomass made of the phytoplancton that has grown, in 24 to 48 hours and on the other side, you will have pure water ." From the biomass, fuel is extracted for use in the building. France's sustainable energy law, the 'RT 2020', requires all major buildings to become more energy efficient by the end of the decade. OriginOil CEO, Riggs Eckelberry, says the law has given the project added momentum. SOUNDBITE (English) ORIGIN OIL CEO, RIGGS ECKELBERRY, SAYING: "France has a major thermoregulation that it's requiring builders to meet. So builders throughout France now have to show more energy coming out of the building that is going in, and they have to clean the sewage water. These are big challenges. Algae is the perfect solution for both generating energy and cleaning up the sewage water." The block, based in Paris's business district La Defense, contains around 38 million square feet of office space. The two partners believe that integrating algae production into large building complexes will help firms cut or even eliminate their emissions...while also helping them save money and water that would otherwise get poured down the drain.

Urban algae turns wastewater into energy

Monday, 03 Dec, 2012 - 02:13

Most Popular »

Editors' Picks »

The Exchange »

The Exchange: Hot commodity The Exchange: Hot commodity

Wed, 16 Jul, 2014 - (9:25)

The Exchange: Constitutional crusade The Exchange: Constitutional crusade

Wed, 25 Jun, 2014 - (11:35)

The Exchange: The value of money The Exchange: The value of money

Mon, 02 Jun, 2014 - (9:53)

The Exchange: China’s Second Continent The Exchange: China’s Second Continent

Tue, 27 May, 2014 - (9:35)

The Exchange: A master of business arts The Exchange: A master of business arts

Thu, 08 May, 2014 - (8:24)

The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities

Mon, 05 May, 2014 - (8:52)

The Exchange: Let the rocking commence The Exchange: Let the rocking commence

Tue, 08 Apr, 2014 - (8:13)

The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies

Mon, 24 Mar, 2014 - (9:54)

Is doing good a good business? Is doing good a good business?

Mon, 17 Mar, 2014 - (7:38)

Oddly Enough »

Elephants 'lovin' polo tournament Elephants 'lovin' polo tournament

Thu, 28 Aug, 2014 - (1:31)

Triplet pandas celebrate a milestone Triplet pandas celebrate a milestone

Thu, 28 Aug, 2014 - (0:48)

Group shatters record for longest flower garland by a mile Group shatters record for longest flower...

Wed, 27 Aug, 2014 - (1:30)

Masked hero sweeps clean Masked hero sweeps clean

Tue, 26 Aug, 2014 - (1:10)

Right muddy mess at World Bog Snorkeling Championships Right muddy mess at World Bog Snorkeling...

Tue, 26 Aug, 2014 - (1:11)

Hello Kitty conquers space Hello Kitty conquers space

Mon, 25 Aug, 2014 - (1:11)

Japanese zoo welcomes red panda cub Japanese zoo welcomes red panda cub

Mon, 25 Aug, 2014 - (0:42)

Is it a plane? No, it's a hoverbike Is it a plane? No, it's a hoverbike

Fri, 22 Aug, 2014 - (2:40)

Fox kicks off "Simpsons" mega marathon Fox kicks off "Simpsons" mega marathon

Thu, 21 Aug, 2014 - (0:56)

Six-story tall duck floats into L.A. port Six-story tall duck floats into L.A. port

Thu, 21 Aug, 2014 - (1:02)

Young artist paints surreal illusions on bodies Young artist paints surreal illusions on...

Thu, 21 Aug, 2014 - (1:30)

Reuters Investigates »

Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead" Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead"

Wed, 19 Feb, 2014 - (8:24)

Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest

Fri, 10 Jan, 2014 - (4:01)

"Passed around like a dog" "Passed around like a dog"

Thu, 29 Aug, 2013 - (6:32)

Adopted, then abandoned online Adopted, then abandoned online

Thu, 29 Aug, 2013 - (13:21)

How the DEA keeps its secrets secret How the DEA keeps its secrets secret

Mon, 05 Aug, 2013 - (1:36)

How education lost its role as the great equalizer - Reuters Investigates How education lost its role as the great...

Mon, 17 Dec, 2012 - (7:52)

Jihad Jane: From abused child to American jihadist - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: From abused child to American...

Sun, 09 Dec, 2012 - (10:01)

Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters...

Mon, 10 Dec, 2012 - (10:39)

Moving Pictures »

Images of August Images of August

Fri, 29 Aug, 2014 - (1:00)

Mending dolls, teddies and hearts Mending dolls, teddies and hearts

Fri, 22 Aug, 2014 - (3:12)

"Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay "Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay

Mon, 11 Aug, 2014 - (2:27)

Burned memories Burned memories

Fri, 08 Aug, 2014 - (3:02)

Images of July Images of July

Fri, 01 Aug, 2014 - (1:20)

World Cup: passion on the pitch World Cup: passion on the pitch

Fri, 11 Jul, 2014 - (1:00)

A refugee in America gives back A refugee in America gives back

Thu, 03 Jul, 2014 - (3:25)

A long search for refuge A long search for refuge

Fri, 20 Jun, 2014 - (3:04)

World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals

Fri, 06 Jun, 2014 - (1:08)

VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light

Fri, 30 May, 2014 - (1:37)