A collaboration between an environmental company, an electric co-op, a methane gas operation, and local and state government in Virginia is turning millions of tons of trash into treasure.
The project, Richmond Energy, LLC, will be built in Henrico County, Va., and is a partnership between Old Dominion Electric Cooperative and White Plains-based energy company Fortistar.
Across the U.S., mountains of trash increase every day, decomposing and emitting harmful methane gas. Fortistar is one of several companies converting these landfills into methane wells, which are like natural gas wells and can be used to power vehicles, homes, and businesses.
Mark Comora, President of Fortistar, said this process is cleaner than just burning the methane, and is the only renewable energy source with a continuous flow. The new plant can power 4,500 homes, he says.
Virginia Lt. Governor Bill Bolling is in favor of the plant because, he says, except for permitting, the government has no part in building these facilities, which promotes free enterprise without using scarce state funds.