The company has been cooperating with Brazilian hydroelectric company Itaipu Binacional and other partners in a trial that has seen poultry and cattle manure converted into biomethane. The fuel has successfully been used in a Scania Euro 6 natural gas bus, demonstrating its potential as a sustainable energy source and as a way of solving a number of environmental problems facing Paraná state.
The region is home to a significant amount of agribusiness, including many small to medium sized farms that produce poultry and eggs. Unfortunately, the waste from these farms frequently ends up in rivers. Here it contaminates the water and also creates problems for Itaipu Binacional’s hydroelectric operations by damaging turbines.
To help solve these problems, Itaipu is encouraging local farmers to produce biomethane from waste rather than discarding it.
Scania happily supplied a Euro 6 natural gas bus for testing at Itaipu’s request. The bus and results from the fuel trial were recently presented to dignitaries and the media at Itaipu Technological Park. The Ambassador of Sweden in Brazil, Per-Arne Hjelmborn, was one of the keynote speakers in the event, highlighting that Sweden could cooperate with Brazil to develop the biogas chain to be used in transport solutions.
Despite the clear advantages of biomethane, biogas vehicles are not currently used in Brazil. However, the Brazilian National Oil Agency is pushing for regulation of the fuel to allow for its wider use. The bus used in the Brazilian trial has also been tested in Bogotá, Colombia and Mexico City and León, México. However, in both countries it was fueled with natural gas.