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Published on January 7th, 2009 | by Amiel Blajchman


Israeli Company Uses Olive Waste for Alternative Energy Source

January 7th, 2009 by  

Olive branches have traditionally been used as a symbol of peace, but as a symbol of renewable energy? Olivebar, a company based in Israel, is using olive press waste to create a long-term, renewable energy source.

Olivebar takes olive press waste, known in Hebrew as gefet, which is then solidified into rolls that contain 2.5 times more energy than an equivalent amount of wood. Designed for wood-burning ovens, the residue left behind by the rolls is able to be used as fertilizer in home gardens.

“It’s a totally green product, all natural, without any glues or chemicals,” according to general manager Eli Karniel. “Whereas once it was more economical to buy heating oil, today people are looking for all kinds of alternatives. People went over to wood, but now governments don’t want people to cut down forests, so they’re turning to natural alternatives like ours.”

As an added bonus, simply gathering the gefet is good for the environment, as the olive press waste can contaminate ground water if left on its own. An alternative energy source for those with wood-burning stoves, Olivebar is most effective for small homes that still use, and are able to use wood-burning stoves efficiently.

Image: Olives via Flickr’s Media Commons[social_buttons]

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About the Author

Amiel is the founder of the Globalis Group, an organization whose motto is "combining action and thought for a sustainable world." His experience includes working with the Canadian government on greenspace projects, sustainable development programs and on policy documents on issues as diverse as climate change, sustainable development, and the environmental and social impacts of transportation. He is listed on the UN’s Greenhouse Gas Inventory’s list of GHG experts, and has sat on the Canadian Environmental Certifications Board’s Greenhouse Gas Verification and Validation Certification committee.

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