Landfill gas plant opens

From  The Observer

October 21, 2010

After nearly a year of construction the switch has been flipped on the Petrolia landfill’s gas-to-energy project.

Officials with Waste Management were joined by dignitaries Wednesday to launch what was called an advance in clean energy in southwestern Ontario.

The site serves as this region’s first private facility of its kind.

The new facility will use methane gas created from the natural decomposition of waste to power up to 2,500 homes, which is about the number of homes in Petrolia.

It’s the region’s first private landfill-gas-to-energy plant.

By next year the gas, collected through wells throughout the site, will power four large engines to generates about 3.2 megawatts of power.

“This facility marks a milestone for clean energy in Ontario as Waste Management expands our … mandate with the goal of reducing the province’s carbon footprint,” said Mike Hirlehey, district manager with Waste Management.”

The Petrolia landfill is the second facility Waste Management has opened in Ontario and only the third in Canada.

The grand opening represents the first of two projects in Lambton, with a second project destined for the Twin Creeks Landfill in Watford.

Electricity generated at the facility will be directed to the Town of Petrolia and the Ontario grid through Bluewater Power’s distribution system.

“Bluewater Power is pleased to partner with Waste Management on this excellent initiative,” said Tim Vanderheide, chief operating officer, Bluewater Power Generation Corporation.

“Our goal is to provide value to local communities by providing innovative energy solutions, which is exactly what this green energy project is all about.”

The Petrolia landfill provides waste disposal services for Petrolia and the surrounding communities and accepts waste from high volume areas, such as the Region of Peel.

Hirlehey said the Petrolia landfill will continue receiving waste for another three to four years, and produce enough gas for conversion to energy for at least 20 years.

With files from QMI Agency

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