Winnipeg ponders garbage gas capture and sale
A city hall committee is seeking ideas on what to do with nearly 100,000 tonnes a year of harmful greenhouse gas produced by rotting trash at Winnipeg's Brady Road landfill.
The public works committee voted Tuesday to issue a request for proposals on how methane gas emitted at the landfill could be captured and recycled as an energy source.
The provincial government, under Manitoba's Climate Change and Emissions Reduction Act, has ordered that emissions from the dump be reduced starting Dec. 31, 2010.
The landfill, covering four-fifths of a square kilometre and holding more than five million tonnes of trash, produces more greenhouse gas than all of Winnipeg's other city-owned facilities combined, city documents said, and a recycling program could prevent an estimated 97,000 tonnes annually of methane from entering the atmosphere.
Reducing emissions at Brady Road "is the single most effective action the city can take to address the issue of climate change," a report to the public works committee said.
"Why would we want to burn off a gas that we can use in other ways?" Darryl Drohomerski, manager of Winnipeg's solid waste services, said Tuesday.
"The goal through the proposal call is to allow bidders to be able to tell us that they want to use this gas in such a manner that's better for the environment and also better for the city."
The captured methane could be sold to a utility like Manitoba Hydro or used to fuel operations at the University of Manitoba, documents said.
The committee's plan is subject to a full council vote Nov. 25.