Waste Management & Decommissioning

Landfill gas-to-energy project earns top project award from EPA

HOUSTON, Texas, Feb. 8, 2001(BUSINESS WIRE)—Waste Management Inc.’s (NYSE:WMI) Grand Central Sanitary Landfill in Plainfield Township, Northampton County, Pa., recently received the 2000 “Project of the Year” award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (U.S.EPA) Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP) for its landfill gas-to-energy project.

The project is unique due to its community-based structure. The 10-megawatt power plant is located on Waste Management’s landfill and operated by Waste Management, but a community-based, non-profit corporation named the Green Knight Economic Development Corporation (GKEDC) retains ownership of the plant and the electric sales. The GKEDC sells the “green power” to a local utility, then uses the proceeds for economic development projects that benefit the three municipalities comprising the Pen Argyl School District. The three municipalities include Plainfield Township and the boroughs of Pen Argyl and Wind Gap.

“This project is a win-win for all parties,” said A. Maurice Myers, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Waste Management Inc. “We were able to find a beneficial use for our landfill gas, and, at the same time, help spur economic development in the community. This award confirms that going beyond compliance is good for business and good for the communities we serve.”

Landfill gas is produced through the natural breakdown of waste deposited in a landfill. The gas, which would otherwise be wasted, is a readily available, renewable energy source that can be gathered and used directly as medium Btu gas for industrial use or can be sold to gas-to-energy plants to fuel engine or turbine-driven generators, which, in turn, generate electricity.

Waste Management currently supplies landfill gas to 38 landfill gas-to-electricity projects and to 35 medium Btu gas projects in 21 states across the United States. In all, the gas-to-electricity projects provide more than 160 MW of energy, enough to power approximately 60,000 homes. The medium Btu projects provide more than 100 MW of energy for industrial and commercial customers.

Waste Management Inc. is its industry’s leading provider of comprehensive waste management services. Based in Houston, the Company serves municipal, commercial, industrial and residential customers throughout North America.