CHP Greenhouses Make Growing Even Greener
Combined heat and power greenhouses capture waste and CO2
Bearing little resemblance to a typical farm, modern large greenhouses are, in reality, complex, high-tech factories that produce food and other crops. A natural gas Cat® or MWM™ generator set produces electrical power for the greenhouse needs, and any excess electricity can be sold to the utility company and fed back to the grid. The extra heat from the engine is collected to keep the greenhouse warm and heat water that is also stored in large tanks to continue warming the plants throughout the night. Meanwhile, the CO2 in the exhaust from the generator set — traditionally emitted to the atmosphere — is purified and cycled back into the greenhouse air to fertilize the plants during the day. Roelf Koster, sales manager at MWM Benelux B.V., a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Energy Solutions GmbH, helps growers to produce tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, flowers and more in greenhouses that are more efficient than ever before. In the last five years, MWM Benelux delivered CHP plants for greenhouses to growers in Germany, Greece, Ireland, Russia and Spain.
Read more in the 2014 Sustainability Report.