Regional Landfill To Convert Garbage To Mileage

Starting next year, some of the trash you toss out may end up in gas tanks instead of buried at a large regional landfill in eastern Oregon. 

This project is a joint venture between landfill operator Waste Management Inc. and a small engineering company based in Bend called InEnTec. The partners announced they'll build their first waste-to-energy plant at the big landfill near Arlington, Oregon. The planned facility will vaporize trash in a very high temperature melter. Spokeswoman Jackie Lang says the resulting superheated gases can then be recombined to make synthetic fuel.

Lang: “We are really excited about the option of producing clean transportation fuels. Could be diesel. Could be ethanol, methanol. We're not focusing right now on that end product as much as we're focusing on the installation of the plant itself.”

Lang says electricity generation by burning the fuel is another option. Construction is set to begin this summer. If all goes well, the waste-to-energy plant could start up at the end of the year. 

Copyright 2010 Northwest News Network

Web extras:

S4 Energy Solutions (joint venture between Waste Management and Bend-based InEnTec):