Need to Know

Waste Management Inks Landfill Gas Deal with Milwaukee Sewerage District

The gas will be used to power the plant and dry Milorganite fertilizer

Waste Management of Wisconsin has a memorandum of understanding outlining the tentative terms of a future agreement that would send landfill gas from the Metro landfill in Franklin, Wisc., to the Jones Island sewage treatment plant in Milwaukee beginning in the summer of 2019.

The gas would be used to power the plant and dry Milorganite fertilizer.

Earlier this year, Waste Management said it was investing $30 million in renewable energy infrastructure in Louisville, Ky., to fuel its natural gas-powered fleet of 80 trucks. To separate the methane gas from other gases, Waste Management will build a facility at the Outer Loop Recycling and Disposal Facility.

In addition to fueling its fleet, Waste Management will also sell any remaining gas to Texas Gas for the going natural gas rate.

Meanwhile, more utilities are considering landfill gas to meet their renewable energy quotas, as spelled out in states’ renewable portfolio standards (RPS). At least 60 commercial and industrial organizations have switched to LFG in their boilers.

The trend could be be driven largely by the updated federal New Source Performance Standard rules mandating lower greenhouse gas emissions from landfills. Although the Environmental Protection Agency recently stayed those rules, raising the possibility that the standards might be revised.

The Journal Sentinel has more on the Waste Management deal:

Contaminants will be removed from Metro's landfill gas before it is piped to Emerald Park and blended with the fuel supply there, officials said. Concentrations of water vapor, hydrogen sulfide and silicon particles in the gas must be reduced before the fuel is burned at Jones Island.

MMSD will be responsible for designing, constructing and operating the landfill gas treatment plant, compressors and meters to be built on Metro property, under the agreement. Cost of the plant is estimated at $11 million, officials said.

Waste Management will construct a pipeline connection to Emerald Park and maintain its landfill gas extraction system at Metro, as part of the deal.

The agreement will save district ratepayers up to $10 million over the 20-year contract, according to MMSD Controller and Treasurer Mark Kaminski.

Read the full story here.

Correction: June 29, 2017
The story was clarified to reflect that the two sides had reached a memorandum of understanding outlining the tentative terms of a future contract rather than a finalized deal.
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