MARCH 2008

EPA recognizes clean energy initiatives

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized the accomplishments of numerous landfill methane partners that are generating renewable energy while reducing greenhouse gas emissions in January.

EPA gave recognition awards to government and private organizations that are helping the agency deliver energy and environmental benefits through its Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP).

Methane, a primary component of landfill gas, is a greenhouse gas over 20 times as potent as carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the atmosphere. Nationwide, there are approximately 435 projects that harness landfill gas to produce renewable energy. In 2007 alone, these projects provided over 10.5 billion kilowatt hours of electricity and delivered 79 billion cubic feet per year of landfill gas to corporate and government users, and produced energy equivalent to powering roughly 810,000 homes and heating nearly 547,000 homes each year.

For 2007, EPA’s LMOP recognized projects that took innovative approaches to utilize landfill gas while delivering environmental and economic benefits.

Projects of the Year

•Greentree High Btu Landfill Gas Project, Kersey, Pennsylvania - This project is one of the largest landfill gas projects in the country. The landfill gas is upgraded to natural gas quality and utilized in clean-burning power generation equipment to generate renewable power.

•Iris Glen Landfill Gas to Energy Project, Johnson City, Tennessee - Landfill gas energy projects that upgrade the gas to natural gas quality are usually limited to landfills with large amounts of gas, but not in Johnson City. There, an engine and boiler use landfill gas to supply 100,000 pounds per hour of steam, 7.5 megawatts of electricity, and chilled water to a Veterans Administration hospital, university buildings, and a large civic center.

•Southeastern Chester County Refuse Authority (SECCRA), Chester County, Pennsylvania - SECCRA Power developed this landfill gas energy project through a number of innovative approaches, including joining a regional transmission organization to sell green power.

Industry Partner

•Ameresco, Framingham, Massachusetts - Ameresco exhibited leadership by developing innovative and flexible landfill gas energy projects. Thirteen operational projects, including three new projects in 2007, with another 9 under construction, demonstrate Ameresco’s ability to provide long-term environmental and economic solutions for landfills and the communities they serve.

Energy Partner

•Alameda Power & Telecom and the City of Palo Alto, Watsonville, California – Two community-based utilities actively pursued landfill gas opportunities in their own backyard. Tapping an initial 3.2 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy, with an additional 15 MW from local landfills under development, helps them meet renewable energy goals and provide green power to a record number of green power customers.

Community Partner

•Greater Lebanon Refuse Authority (GLRA), Lebanon, Pennsylvania - GLRA and PPL Renewable Energy created and built a Renewable Energy Education Facility that serves as an educational forum for local, national, and international visitors. With the goal of “empowering our future leaders with green energy,” the project demonstrates the power of renewable energy from a 3.2 megawatt landfill gas energy project, 2,000 watt wind turbine, and 1,000 watt solar array (multiple solar panels).

Endorser

•CIFAL-Atlanta, Atlanta, Georgia - CIFAL-Atlanta co-hosted with LMOP the Greening Solid Waste Practices workshop in September, 2007. The forum allowed solid waste professionals to explore best practices for implementing landfill gas energy projects to reduce methane emissions, provide a clean, renewable form of energy, and stimulate the local economy.