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Industry experts unite to convert global racing championship food waste to electricity

Industry experts unite to convert global racing championship food waste to electricity

WASTE and recycling experts Tidy Planet and Eco Sustainable Solutions collaborated to convert global off-road racing championship Extreme E’s food waste into electricity, at its recent Jurassic X Prix at the Bovington British Army military base in Dorset, UK.

Extreme E takes electric off-road motorsport around the globe to some of the world’s most remote locations, and as part of its mission to promote sustainability and protect the planet, it’s turning its attention to the food waste generated at its race sites.

For the final leg of the racing voyage on 18-19 December, organic waste solutions firm Tidy Planet provided the Extreme E crew with food waste drying technology. This was to remove the moisture and sterilise the material – transforming it into a coffee-granule-like powder – so it can be stored safely for months on end and transported without rotting or smelling.

The end-product was then taken 12 miles northwest of Bovington to local organic waste processor Eco Sustainable Solutions’ anaerobic digestion plant in Piddlehinton, where it was turned into biogas and converted into renewable energy.

“It’s a fantastic opportunity to be supporting Extreme E with their Dorset event,” commented Huw Crampton, sales manager at Tidy Planet.

“We’re experienced in providing this kind of equipment to remote locations all over the world – from oilfields in Azerbaijan to luxury island resorts in the Maldives – we know that food waste is tricky to store and treat in such challenging environments, particularly those with high temperatures. And due to the lack of infrastructure to process it in such remote places, it’s better to have a product that you can store safely and wait until it’s possible to move all the material in bulk.”

Tristan Dampney, marketing manager at Eco Sustainable Solutions, added: “Being a part of this pioneering sporting event is a great fit for us, as we process waste to create the energy source the Extreme E vehicles require – electricity.
“We’re passionate about the environment and creating sustainable solutions that reduce landfill and have a positive impact on our planet.”

Extreme E’s utility manager, Andy Welch, concluded: “Sustainability and environmental care are deeply important to Extreme E – after all, the purpose behind the series is to raise awareness of climate issues.

“At the Dorset event, we’re aiming to reduce waste where possible – with all staff bringing their own reusable plates and cups – and where it’s not, we want to implement closed loop solutions with the smallest possible carbon footprint.

“For the UK event, we have the ideal infrastructure close to the race, but when we travel abroad this isn’t always the case – meaning we can’t guarantee that the waste won’t end up in landfill. And this is something we wanted to change. We know that if we bring the material back with us, we can ensure it isn’t landfilled, but we needed a way to help us hold on to over three weeks’ worth of food waste, hence the call to Tidy Planet.”

The Extreme E championship kicked off in Saudi Arabia in April 2021 with the Desert X Prix and has since travelled to Senegal (Ocean X Prix), Greenland (Arctic X Prix), and Italy (Enel X Island X Prix).

Photo: Huw Crampton (left) sales manager at Tidy Planet and Andy Welch (right) Extreme E’s utility manager – with food waste drying equipment at the Bovington site

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