Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Who broke wind, part II

Who Broke Wind? was the post title to one of the first posts in the Notebook. It's appropriate then that at I revisit that name when referencing the information that follows. The Spartanburg Herald Journal has been reporting recently on a joint deal between the county and Miliken Industries - one of the largest privately held textile and chemical firms in the world.

Spartanburg county would invest approximately $3.8 million initially in converting there solid waste landfill into a power plant. The county estimates that within a decade of selling the energy to Miliken that the methane plant will not only pay for itself but turn a profit.

Currently the county burns off the methane to prevent underground buildup which has the potential of escaping and not only polluting the air with one of the leading green house gasses but also being hazardous to the health of near by residents. See this video at the SHJ for a neat look into how the operation will work. The Sunday Journal says the Miliken plant is only expected to use half of the methane gas produced by the plant, the county will continue burning the other half until a suitable customer is found. Can anyone say sell it wholesale to the local utility?

It appears then that 1) this is a huge landfill and 2) that we've come some ways since that first post on the useful lifetime of landfill methane gas plants or 2) this is proof positive that with a little ingenuity and firm commitment earlier obstacles and resignations to production of power via our trash can be overcome.

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