A secret cache of clean energy is lurking in sewers, and there are growing efforts to put it to work in the battle against climate change. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates Americans wash enough energy down the drain every year to power about 30 million homes. The sources are often everyday items inside homes. Think hot showers, washing machines and sinks. Evolving technology is making it easier to harness that mostly warm water. Denver is now constructing what is likely the largest sewer heat-recovery project in North America, according to Enwave, a Canadian energy company set to operate the system. Over the next few years, a $1 billion remodel will turn the 250-acre site, home to the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo, into a hub for art, education and agriculture. The revamped National Western Center will include about a million square feet of new indoor space, all of which will be heated and cooled with energy from the sewer pipes below. Brad Buchanan, the CEO leading the redevelopment, said the project has already changed how he thinks about the best location for real estate. Big pieces of sewer infrastructure have long repelled development. Now he imagines they […]

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