By Aly Walansky
Updated April 18, 2016
U.S. Government Buying 11 Million Pounds of Cheese
Credit: © Lisa Romerein/Getty Images

A meal is not complete without cheese. It is part of so many aspects of our lives: entertaining, health, even as the butt of jokes. But in one region of the UK they are taking the power of cheese to a whole new level. Actual power.

Cumbria, England will be heating homes this winter via biogas made of whey residues during the cheese-making process. The process saves energy costs and eliminates waste.

It is created by pumping liquid whey residues that remain from the cheese-making, mixed with water that is used to clean down cheesy equipment, into a giant tank. This produces a bacteria that will then feed on the cheese residues, and the fats and sugars within it, which make biogas. This is a mixture of methane and other gases - through a process of anaerobic digestion. And then we have a greener form of gas production.

“This project, generating biogas solely from creamery residues is based on British engineering and is transforming the way in which the dairy industry manages its residues,” Craig Chapman CEO of Clearfleau Limited, the company behind the plant where the cheese residue is sourced, said in a statement to Newsweek.

“This shows how sustainability can be an integral part of our food supply chain. “

This leads me to firmly believe that I need to increase my consumption of cheese. In the name of science, of course.