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America’s 12 Largest WTE Facilities

Gallery-America’s 12 Largest WTE Facilities

In its recent Advancing Sustainable Materials Management study, the Environmental Protection Agency reported that the U.S. sent 32.66 million tons of waste to facilities that converted the refuse into energy.  Overall, the 2013 figures include approximately 29.5 million tons of municipal solid waste, 510,000 tons of wood and 2.65 million tons of tires. 

The Energy Recovery Council tracks the state of the waste-to-energy market. It also maintains a directory of facilities that includes plants currently operating as well as some that are inactive. 

About half of the waste-to-energy facilities are privately owned while the rest are publicly-owned. However, the majority are privately operated. The bulk of those are operated either by Covanta Energy or Wheelabrator Technologies. (For more info on the WTE sector, check out our explainer on the topic.)

About 75 percent of the currently operated facilities use mass burn technology. The rest are refuse-derived fuel or modular plants. The bulk of facilities produce electricity only. About a quarter of them produce energy and steam. A handful produce steam only.

The following slides include the 12 largest facilities in the country ranked by gross electrical capacity, according to ERC report.

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