The Science Of ...

The Science of Waste-to-Energy: Producing 5% of Cape Town's gas

This week Bruce Whitfield looks at the Science of Waste-to-Energy with Egmont Ottermann CEO at New Horizons Energy.

Their plant in Cape Town was designed to be a true landfill alternative. They turn 500 tons of waste a day and turn it into bio-gas.

Cape Town produces 6-7000 tons of waste a day and the plant processes 10% of that total.

They work with Waste-Mart who collect the refuse and waste throughout Cape Town.

We take out all the stuff that does not go into a processor, like sofas and engine blocks...mattresses and computers. We have to separate the recyclables from the non-recyclables. That happens in a mechanical process.

Egmont Ottermann CEO at New Horizons Energy

The recyclables then go into a traditional municipal refuse facility. They get sent on to recycling companies.

The non-recyclables get put into a press.

I want you to imagine a garlic press. But not the size of a garlic press in your kitchen. This is slightly bigger and works at 280 bar ( 280 times the atmosphere) which is a lot of pressure.

Egmont Ottermann CEO at New Horizons Energy.

This press squeezes out all the organics that we can extract from this solid waste. It then goes into anaerobic digesters...it's a thick nice gooey juice. And the bugs love this juice. we produce a biogas which is a mixture of CO2 and methane. We split that and we produce liquefied CO2 at a food grade quality and produce biomethane which is compressed and used as a liquid petroleum gas - an LPG alternative.

Egmont Ottermann CEO at New Horizons Energy.

They produce 5% of Cape Town's gas requirement and they produce a good fertiliser.

Listen to the interview with Egmont Ottermann of New Horizons Energy below:


This article first appeared on 702 : The Science of Waste-to-Energy: Producing 5% of Cape Town's gas


CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
How the Water Research Commission is saving South Africa from water scarcity

How the Water Research Commission is saving South Africa from water scarcity

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Water Research Commission CEO Dhesigen Naidoo.

How your phone can help you pay less for insurance

How your phone can help you pay less for insurance

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Outsurance CEO Danie Matthee.

Cape Town International Convention Centre is state-owned... and profitable!

Cape Town International Convention Centre is state-owned... and profitable!

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) CEO Julie-May Ellingson.

How “business rescue” works to save distressed companies

How “business rescue” works to save distressed companies

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Werksmans Attorneys Director Dr Eric Levenstein.

Cheap flights to exotic destinations... no travel agent required!

Cheap flights to exotic destinations... no travel agent required!

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Ross Kata (Expedia Area Manager for Africa, Indian Ocean and Israel).

South Africa’s largest airports are bursting at the seams

South Africa’s largest airports are bursting at the seams

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) CEO Bongani Maseko.

Popular articles
Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Watch the Guptas pack their bags and run in Nando's inspiring new advertisement.

PSG Chair Jannie Mouton opens up (kind of) about Steinhoff

PSG Chair Jannie Mouton opens up (kind of) about Steinhoff

In 2012 Steinhoff acquired 20% of wealth manager PSG, reportedly infuriating Mouton. Bruce Whitfield interviews him.

[LISTEN] Sara-Jayne King overjoyed at finding her biological father

[LISTEN] Sara-Jayne King overjoyed at finding her biological father

After a 702/ CapeTalk interview, the author of the autobiographical book Killing Karoline spoke to her dad for the first time.

[LISTEN] Caller challenges Eusebius on land disposition

[LISTEN] Caller challenges Eusebius on land disposition

‘I need you to provide me with an answer' - John from Edenvale, Gauteng

Number of South Africans visiting the seaside has dropped

Number of South Africans visiting the seaside has dropped

Fedhasa's CEO is encouraging South Africans to take a look at the specials that are currently out there and make their bookings.

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

Entrepreneur Max Lichaba built his own empire and is the CEO of Lichaba Creations and several other businesses. This is his story.