Serville, a Spanish city located in Southern Spain is generating green electricity from discarded oranges. This Spanish city is home to the largest number of orange trees in Europe. When this city was confused about what to do with Its over 45,000 orange trees, it decided to convert the unwanted ones to electricity and this is amazing.
The city has so many oranges that they always end up in the trash every year and this has been a huge concern. The city has finally known what to do with these leftover oranges. Although this is just a pilot program, for now, it is believed to expand in the medium-term.
In 1970, Serville had just 5,000 orange. However, since then there has been an orange boom in the city. Planting an orange tree was associated with happiness and as such, people began to plant it in the streets. Orange trees are known to produce Azahar flower and this flower is believed to have health benefits which makes it an essential ingredient in oils and perfumes.
With the abundance of these trees in this Spanish city, it began to call for attention since it became a kind of problem. Once these oranges fall from their trees, cars squash them, and they litter the streets with their juice. The city employed almost 200 people to help collect these fruits.
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This wasn’t the best solution after all. So the city tried another option by generating electricity from the leftover oranges. The city in collaboration with Emasesa, a municipal water company, launched a pilot program through which 35 tons of oranges will power a water purification plant.
The program works this way; the oranges will be put in a facility that generates electricity from organic matter. The methane released from the fermentation of these oranges will drive the generator and produce electricity.
It’s an innovative experience of the circular economy through which we are taking advantage of organic matter. We want to recycle all the city’s discarded oranges. Through the pilot, we are transforming a plant that used to consume a lot of energy to now starting to produce it.Enrique Vaquerizo, head of residual waters at Emasesa
About 500 liters of juice will be produced from each ton of orange. The government is expecting to produce 1,500 KWh from this juice and that is enough electricity for 150 households. In the end, the plan is to process about 1.700 tons of oranges that could power 73,000 households.