NOVEMBER 2008

Covanta celebrates waste conversion milestone

Covanta Holding Corporation recently celebrated a major milestone – the company recently converted its 250 millionth ton of waste into energy.

In the process, the company estimates that 250 million tons of greenhouse gases have also been offset. Covanta’s 35 domestic facilities offset approximately one ton of greenhouse gases for every ton of waste processed.

Covanta develops and operates large scale energy-from-waste and other renewable energy projects. The 250 million tons of residual municipal solid waste converted into energy since beginning operations in 1986 has several significant environmental benefits. Covanta reports that it has:

  • Offset enough greenhouse gas emissions to have the same benefit as planting 6 billion trees;
  • Generated enough clean, renewable electricity to power 11 million homes;
  • Preserved hundreds of acres of land and habitat (250 million tons of waste is enough to cover the entire island of Manhattan 30 feet deep); and
  • Recycled approximately 5 million tons of metal that would have otherwise been landfilled, or enough metal to build 60 Golden Gate bridges.

Said Covanta CEO and president, Anthony J. Orlando, “Over the past 22 years, we have proven that energy-from-waste helps address three of society’s biggest issues: how to provide sustainable waste disposal, how to generate clean energy and how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

Each year, Covanta’s energy-from-waste facilities process approximately 5 percent of the nation’s waste. At the same time, energy derived from that waste generates enough energy to power all the homes in Philadelphia and its suburbs for a year. Covanta’s facilities also recover and recycle more than 360,000 tons of metals from the waste each year.