County converts landfill’s greenhouse gases
Frederick County and SCS Engineers along with
SCS Field Services (SCS) celebrated the opening of the new landfill
gas-to-energy (LFGE) system installed at the Frederick County
The $4.5 million project was completed by a partnership between
the county’s Department of Public Works and SCS. SCS Engineers
provided engineering, and SCS Field Services provided contracting
services for the project. Joe Wilder, the department’s deputy
director, notes that the project was funded from landfill revenues.
The project will generate revenues through the recovery and use
of methane gas which is generated by the gradual decomposition
of solid waste in the landfill. Combustion of the methane gas
will substantially reduce the emission of greenhouse gases from
this landfill. To capture the landfill gas, wells were drilled
into the waste mass at various points, according to Darrin D.
Dillah, an SCS vice president. A vacuum draws the gas from the
wells, which are located in both the closed and active parts
of the landfill, and transmits it to the power generation facility.
System components remove water from the gas, which is then compressed
before being sent to the internal combustion (IC) engines.
Each of the two IC engines has 20 cylinders and generates just
under 1,500 horsepower, Dillah said, equivalent to about 1 megawatt
of electricity. The electricity is connected to the local power
grid. “The electricity generated here is being used in nearby
homes and industrial plants.”
Rappahannock Electric Cooperative, which provides power to part
of the county, will be buying the power generated by the facility.