Could coffee fuel you and your home?

Imagine a world run by coffee? Not just the people running the world but the energy that courses through the veins of the city, from the streetlights to your computer. Coffee grounds could be the new biofuel to power your home and the office.


Coffee has a rich history dating back to 11th century Ethiopia and it has become a firm favourite beverage in the many centuries since. Many cannot imagine a Monday morning without their favourite beverage and it is arguable that the beverage makes people more productive so when the wasted byproduct is announced as a sustainable fuel opportunity we cannot help but be excited by the news! Coffee fueled technology is only one of the many ways future technology is sure to change in our lifetime.

Arthur Kay CEO of bio-bean founded the company in 2013. He was interested in recycling and collection before stumbling across the opportunity to use the coffee cast off grounds for fuel. Sustainable cities and coffee fuel maybe the answer that we’re looking for in regards to creating a sustainable alternative fuel for the for the future.

How much coffee is sold worldwide?

The US uses over $4 Billion worth of coffee per year which is 400 million cups of coffee per day, equivalent to 146 billion cups of coffee per year. The UK produces 500,000 tonnes of waste coffee grounds every year

London based company is the first company worldwide to industrialise the process of recycling waste coffee grounds and turning them into advanced biofuels and biochemicals. The company launched in 2013 after winning a large amount of prestigious awards for the concept from the Mayor of London, UCL, Shell, TSB and Santander. In 2014, bio-bean continue to grow after raising several million pounds in private investment and winning the postcode lottery challenge. The company build a factory in cambridgeshire and later another in Alconbury Weald that could process tens of thousands tonnes of coffee ground waste.

How does it work?

Spent coffee grounds are actually highly calorific and contain valuable compounds which make them an ideal resources to produce clean bio-fuels. Every tonne of wasted coffee grounds can save upto 6.8 tonnes of CO2 emissions using bio-beans technology. Coffee is a great resource and material due to its heat generating properties and because of the vast amount of coffee grounds that are created across the world.

Coffee Logs

Coffee logs were created by bio-bean in 2016, the co-heat logs are perfect for fueling stoves, open fires and chimineas and produce 20% more energy than normal wood. The coffee logs are made from the waste from only 25 cups of coffee.

The Future of the Big-Red Bus

London’s prestigious big red buses will actually be fuelled by coffee bio-fuel in future. The announcement was made in January 2018 that the change will be made in an effort to curb carbon pollutions caused by the buses that flood the city.   Originally published in February 2018 on environment.co.za