By Gary Thomas
Waste Management has reported the completion of a new gas-to-energy plant construction at the Pine Tree Acres Renewable Energy Facility located in Lenox. The new plant is designed to produce 12.8 MW of electricity from waste to fulfill the power requirement of roughly 12,000 Michigan homes.
The decomposition of waste results in the generation of landfill gas, which can be utilized as a substitute for fossil fuels and a source for green energy. The Pine Tree Acres Renewable Energy Facility channels landfill gas as high as 4,800 cubic feet per minute into eight 20-cylinder Caterpillar engines to generate electricity. The electricity produced at the facility is supplied to Consumers Energy through International Transmission Company's transmission system.
The Pine Tree Acres Renewable Energy Facility’s existing gas-to-energy plant produces 8.8 MW of electricity, which is sufficient to power roughly 7,500 homes. Through these two gas-to-energy plants, Waste Management will be producing 21.6 MW of electricity, which is enough to meet the power requirement of roughly 19,500 homes.
According to Waste Management’s Senior District Manager, Chuck Cassie, technology enables the company to produce more landfill gas from waste to serve as an ideal reliable energy source for Macomb County and beyond. Waste Management provides complete waste management services and is North America’s largest recycling company. At present, the company owns and runs 132 landfill gas projects in the North American region. The company plans to produce energy to power two million homes by 2020 from its current production that provides power to more than one million homes.