The Bio-Bus, the U.K.’s first poo-powered bus, just hit the road and is going into active service for a four-week trial period starting Monday 24 November, 2014. The 40-seater bus runs on gas generated through the treatment of sewage and food waste that’s unfit for human consumption, and produces fewer emissions than a traditional diesel engine. The bus is being run by the Bath Bus Company, covering the Bath to Bristol Airport service along the A4 motorway.

Bio-Bus 2

The Bio-Bus can travel 186 miles (300 km) on a full tank of gas. The gas is generated at the Bristol sewage treatment works, a plant run by GENeco, which is a subsidiary of Wessex Water. The general manager of GENeco, Mohammed Saddiq, said: “Through treating sewage and food that’s unfit for human consumption we’re able to produce enough biomethane to provide a significant supply of gas to the national gas network that’s capable of powering almost 8,500 homes as well as fuelling the Bio-Bus.”

Related: I Drove Toyota’s Mirai Future Car to a Sewage Plant and Filled it With Poo Power

According to Wessex Water, one tank of gas represents the annual waste of around five people. The company notes: “Using the annual waste generated from one bus load of passengers would provide enough power for it to travel a return journey from Land’s End to John O’Groats,” or the length of the island of Great Britain from its southernmost to northernmost extremities. Around 10,000 passengers are expected to ride the bus during the four-week trial period.

Mr Saddiq adds, “Gas-powered vehicles have an important role to play in improving air quality in UK cities, but the Bio-Bus goes further than that and is actually powered by people living in the local area, including quite possibly those on the bus itself.” This is fantastic news, though maybe you don’t want to contemplate that too deeply while you are looking around at your fellow passengers.

+ Bath Bus Company 

Via The Guardian

Photos by GENeco and Bath Bus Company via Twitter