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NY-State-Logo Environmental Leader

Waste-to-Energy Project to Reduce GHGs by 40K Tons Annually

NY-State-Logo Environmental LeaderThe New York City metro area’s first large-scale waste-to-energy project will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 40,000 tons annually, according to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who recently announced the launch of the anaerobic digester.

The project is located at Long Island Compost’s 62-acre facility in Yaphank, New York.

The state has awarded the $40 million project a $1.3 million grant through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a program that supports multiple clean energy projects, Forester Daily News reports.

American Organic Energy will operate the digester, which will process over twice as much food waste as currently processed at any existing privately owned food waste digesters accepting offsite food waste in New York state.

The project will accept about 120,000 tons of food waste, 30,000 tons of fats, oils and greases, and 10,000 tons of grass clippings from the Long Island region annually that would otherwise have been transported and dumped into landfills. The digester will convert these waste streams to clean energy, clean water to be used for plant processes and solid-based fertilizer.

The electric power needed to run the digester and the existing facility will be generated using biogas from the project. Long Island Compost also plans to convert the biogas to renewable natural gas that will be used to fuel its trucks on-site, reducing diesel consumption by 200,000 gallons annually. An additional 1.9 million gallons of diesel per year will be offset by injecting the remaining renewable gas produced by the digester into the National Grid natural gas pipeline on Long Island. This will enable the gas to be used to fuel compressed natural gas vehicles in other areas.

The project is part of the Cleaner, Greener Communities program, a statewide initiative encouraging communities to incorporate sustainability goals and principles into local plans and projects. It is scheduled to be completed in August 2016.


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2 thoughts on “Waste-to-Energy Project to Reduce GHGs by 40K Tons Annually

  1. Waste to energy generation is a great thing, don’t get me wrong, but I have to question if this major project would be been been conceived of (let alone built) if it wasn’t subsidized by the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Shouldn’t these projects stand on their own merits instead of having to be subsidized to a large extent by taxpayers?

  2. But that was one of the main points for creating the RGGI in the first place. Receipts from the sale of carbon allowances in the RGGI market were to be used specifically for GHG reduction projects and other environmental priorities. Furthermore, partially funding startup initiatives is a time-honored way to help nascent industries get on their feet and on their way to becoming self-sustaining economic engines. After all, that’s exactly how the oil&gas industries got started, and it is how the wind and solar industries are starting nowadays (although their subsidies and other breaks have been spotty and less substantial than the equivalents for the fossil fuel industries ever were).
    So, no; I do not believe that these projects should stand on their own merits just yet. Let’s continue to utilize the RGGI proceeds in exactly the sorts of ways they were originally intended.

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