Waste? Not, It’s An Energy Source

Texas-based Waste Management, the largest residential recycler in North America and a developer, operator and owner of waste-to-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States, has announced that its new landfill gas-to-energy facility at Eagle Valley Recycling and Disposal Facility in Orion, Mich., is complete and fully operational. Through an agreement between Waste Management and DTE Energy, the 3.2-megwatt (MW) facility is now generating enough electricity to power 2,700 homes in southeast Michigan.

The Eagle Valley facility collects landfill gas, which is generated as waste naturally decomposes. Up to 1,200 cubic feet per minute of landfill gas is channeled into two engines, producing electricity for the grid.

landfill-gas-to-energy

image via Waste Management

“Creating this facility ensures the waste we generate will be converted into a beneficial use,” said Chuck Cassie, senior district manager at the plant. “As Michigan and the rest of the nation look to invest in renewable energy, landfill gas is becoming more attractive because it is reliable. It’s important for residents to understand that landfill gas at Eagle Valley means reliable green energy production for the future.”

Waste Management  owns or operates 132 landfill gas projects in North America, and generates enough energy to power over 1 million homes. The company aims to double its waste-to-energy services by 2020. In addition to landfill gas-to-energy operations, Waste Management’s landfills also supply power to local businesses, including the General Motors assembly plant in Orion and a Ford Motor Company stamping plant in Wayne County, as well as for soybean dryers at a West Michigan business.

Lauren Craig is a writer and consultant living in Seattle, WA. She holds an M.S. in International Development from Tulane University, and is co-founder of Sustainable Systems Integrators, LLC., an employee-owned solar energy design and installation firm in New Orleans, LA. She is also certified in PV design and installation by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP).

    • Ed

      WTE is a waste of nresources and energy.nnIncineration and other so-called conversion technologies, such as gasification, pyrolysis, and plasma, rely on and enables poor design and inefficiencies.nnWTE technologies produce dirty and expensive electricity. They results in pollution, be it greenhouse gases or ash.nnWTE destroys opportunities for recycling and composting along with the jobs that these sustainable options create.n

      • Dcalvoman

        You seem to have a problem with this technology, but your arguments do not hold water as your suggestions can be handled by the process of waste management.nYou have closed your mind to new options.

        • Anonymous

          The technology is not the problem. It’s how its used. Wasting resources, creating toxic emissions and ash. supporting a system of waste rather than zero waste.nnSome may like poor design, inefficiency, pollution, and the resulting need for more extraction of raw materials and the processing, but others would rather have better designed products, less adverse impacts on the planet, and recycling and reuse.

    • Dcalvoman

      This is the kind of forward thinking that we should be encouraging . We should support the work of Waste Management , who should be commended for this action.n