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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Using garbage to create energy

From a story on WXOW, La-Crosse, WI:

ONALASKA, Wisconsin (WXOW)-- La Crosse County is teaming up with Gundersen Lutheran to make our local landfill a renewable energy source.

It maybe hard to believe that seventy thousand tons of garbage can be put to good use, but the Gas to Energy Project is turning solid waste biogas into heat and energy.

The way this process works is, as this garbage begins to decompose it creates methane gas. The La Crosse County Landfill collects the gas in underground pipelines and later, burns the substance.

With this new program, methane would no longer be wasted.

It instead will be sent via an underground pipeline to Gundersen Lutheran in Onalaska.

The project is estimated to cost around 3.3 million dollars.

It requires a two mile pipeline to be installed underground from the landfill to the Onalaska Gundersen Lutheran facility.

Gundersen Lutheran says construction of this project is expected to begin sometime this spring.

The project is expected to offset about 12 percent of Gundersen Lutheran's total energy use.

It is a sustainability investment that will pay itself back within five years.

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