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Toyota starts 'rubbish revolution'

Wed, 02 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0700

TOYOTA has been talking garbage, with ambitious plans to turn waste gases from a landfill site into electricity for building low-emissions cars.

The firm’s factory in the American town of Georgetown, Kentucky, will use the new method of harvesting power to both lower its own fuel bills and reduce the amount of harmful gases escaping into the atmosphere.

With the system expected to be up and running within 12 months, Toyota has revealed how it is expected to work.

Harmful gases are released as landfill waste breaks down, and normally this ends up reducing local air quality around the site. Toyota’s plans, though, involve harvesting this gas before it reaches the surface and turning it into electricity for its Georgetown plant.

Working at full capacity the system will be able to produce one megawatt of electricity per hour; about what it takes to power 800 American homes. This extra shot of power will help to reduce the factory’s demand on the national electricity grid.

What’s more, greenhouse gas emissions from the landfill site will be cut by around 90%, making the move a real win-win option for Toyota and its neighbours in Kentucky.

The power produced by the landfill gas harvesting will be enough to produce 10,000 cars per year, including some of the cleanest-running electric and hybrid cars on sale today.

By Press Association reporter