Six innovative Alberta waste management and waste-to-energy projects have received nearly $31.8-million in funding from an independent organization that battles greenhouse gas emissions in the oil-rich province.
The independent organization, Alberta-based Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation (CCEMC), is funded through payments to an emissions fund that collects cash for each tonne that exceeds a company’s emissions limits.
The most elaborate and expensive project of the six is the $30.7-million Edmonton Waste Management Centre, which received $10 million in CCEMC funding for its installation of high solids anaerobic digestion technology.
The facility will utilize micro-organisms to convert 40,000 tonnes per year of organic solid waste into biogas. Cumulative CO2 emissions will reduce 198,570 tonnes by 2020.
“By using the biogas to generate electricity and heat, we cancel out the production of the same amount of power from fossil fuel sources and their respective emissions,” said Christian Felske, technical specialist at Waste Management Services, in a statement within the CCEMC’s annual report for 2012-2013.
The other Alberta waste management project to receive $10 million in funding from CCEMC is the Drayton Valley Aspen Integrated Resource Recovery (AIRR) Facility. This $22-million project aims to take the Drayton area’s residual municipal waste and convert it into solid fuel pellets – a process that hasn’t been seen in our country. The fuel pellets will then be used as an alternative fuel source to fire Alberta coal plants.
The University of Calgary is getting $1.3 million towards its optimal biocell technology project worth $3.2 million. The decomposition of organic biomass in municipal solid waste landfills produces a potent biogas that results in significant amounts of methane and carbon dioxide emissions. But this project’s biogas can be used to create clean, renewable power. The University is developing a project that will use an optimal biocell to maximize biogas production and allow for the capture and use of the biogas to generate energy. It leaves only 30 per cent of the original mass for disposal.
A 100-year old potato farm is going high tech with its CCEMC injection of nearly $3.6 million towards its waste-to-energy aspiration. GrowTEC will turn organic waste – including the farm’s cull potatoes – into renewable energy to power the farm and feed energy back into the grid.
Lastly, CCEMC is contributing nearly $2 million to Devon Canada’s $5.9-million Organic Rankine Cycle Waste Heat Recovery Project. The project works by using a turbine to harness low-grade waste heat from the glycol-cooling process in oil production. The turbine will use the waste heat to generate electricity for an estimated five to 10 per cent of the facility’s power requirements, offsetting the requirement for grid electricity and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
To read the complete CCEMC report for 2012-2013, please click here.