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F ROM R EFUSE TO R ESOURCE Recapturing Methane In Landfill Gas-to-Energy Projects Anne ReganAtmospheric Chemistry.

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Presentation on theme: "F ROM R EFUSE TO R ESOURCE Recapturing Methane In Landfill Gas-to-Energy Projects Anne ReganAtmospheric Chemistry."— Presentation transcript:

1 F ROM R EFUSE TO R ESOURCE Recapturing Methane In Landfill Gas-to-Energy Projects Anne ReganAtmospheric Chemistry

2 Atmospheric Methane  In the last 650,000 years…  400 ppb (Glacial) ↔ 770 ppb (Interglacial)  In the last 250 years…  Human activities have raised methane levels 148% to 1,774 ppb

3 Radiative Efficiencies and Global Warming Potentials of Carbon Dioxide and Methane Species Atmospheric Concentration (2005) Radiative Forcing (W m -2 ) Lifetime (years) 20-year GWP 100-year GWP CO ± 0.65 ppm1.66variable11 CH 4 1,774 ± 1.8 ppb Source: Forster, P., et al. Changes in Atmospheric Constituents and in Radiative Forcing; Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 2007.

4 Global Sources of Methane  Methanogenic bacteria in wet, oxygen-deficient environments release ~ 80% 2{CH 2 O} + 2H 2 O  2CO 2 + 8H + + 8e - CO 2 + 8H + + 8e -  CH 4 + 2H 2 O NET: 2{CH 2 O}  CO 2 + CH 4  Natural gas leakages, coal mining, and other fossil fuel sources release ~ 20%

5 Global Sources of Methane Source: Wuebbles, D.; Hayhoe, K. Atmospheric methane and global change. Earth-Science Reviews. [Online] 2002, 57,

6 Atmospheric Methane (2005) Source:

7 Methane Sinks  ~ 5% taken up by methanotrophs  ~ 5% uplifted to stratosphere  ~ 90% removed by tropospheric · OH

8 Tropospheric Methane Chemistry CH 4 OH H2OH2O CH 3 O2O2 CH 3 O 2 NO 2 NO O3O3 CH 3 O O2O2 HO 2 CH 2 O H CHO H2H2 CO hv VOC-sensitive (High NO x ) PANs Source: Wuebbles, D.; Hayhoe, K. Atmospheric methane and global change. Earth-Science Reviews. [Online] 2002, 57,

9 Tropospheric Methane Chemistry CH 4 OH H2OH2O CH 3 O2O2 CH 3 O 2 CH 2 OOH hv OH CH 2 O H CHO H2H2 CO hv HO 2 O2O2 CH 3 OOH OH H2OH2O No x -sensitive (Low NO x ) Source: Wuebbles, D.; Hayhoe, K. Atmospheric methane and global change. Earth-Science Reviews. [Online] 2002, 57,

10 Tropospheric Methane Chemistry  Methane oxidation cycle  Accounts for much of the CH 2 O in the troposphere  Produces ~ ¼ of the total CO  CO + OH  H + CO 2  Forms O 3 (high NO x )  Positive feedback ( ↑ CH 4 … ↑ CO… ↓ OH )  ↑ methane, ↑ atmospheric lifetime, ↑ methane…

11 Stratospheric Methane Chemistry  Major source of stratospheric water vapor  CH 4 + OH  CH 3 + H 2 O  May enhance polar stratospheric cloud formation and exacerbate ozone depletion  Reservoir for Cl  CH 4 + Cl  CH 3 + HCl  Prolongs ozone depletion

12 Source: Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: Office of Atmospheric Programs; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, U.S. Anthropogenic Methane Emissions (2006)

13 U.S. Solid Waste by Category (Before Recycling, 2006) Source: Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from

14 Management of U.S. Solid Waste (2006) Source: Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from

15 Municipal Solid Waste Landfills  Residential  Commercial  Non-hazardous industrial

16 Trends in U.S. Municipal Solid Waste Generation (1960 – 2006) Source: Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from

17 Municipal Solid Waste Landfill Emissions  ~50% methane  ~45% CO 2  Less than 5% N 2  Trace amounts of non-methane organic compounds  various HAPs, ozone depleting substances, and VOCs  Landfill gas contributes to the greenhouse effect, smog formation, health and explosion hazards

18 Landfill Gas Controls  Combustion  Flaring  Energy recovery (IC engines, gas/steam turbines)  Purification  Natural gas CH 4 + 2O 2  CO 2 + 2H 2 O + heat energy

19 U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions Allocated to Economic Sectors (1990 – 2006) Source: Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: Office of Atmospheric Programs; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 2008.

20 Trends in U.S. MSW Landfill Emissions (1990 – 2006) Source: Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: Office of Atmospheric Programs; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 2008.

21 Landfill Methane Outreach Program  Created by the EPA in 1994  Goal: lower the barriers to building landfill gas energy recovery systems  435 landfill-gas-to-energy facilities already generating 1,325MW of electricity  ~550 candidate landfills identified  Collective potential to power more than 1.6 million homes annually

22 Chautauqua County Landfill  83 acres in the town of Ellery, NY  Serves: Chautauqua County, parts of Erie and Cattaraugus Counties, and Pennsylvania  ~ 300,000 tons of solid waste per year  Household  Commercial  Nonhazardous industrial  Construction/demolition waste  Sewage treatment sludge

23 Chautauqua County Landfill

24 Or you could just go to jail…

25 LFG Collection System

26 The Working Field

27 Flare

28 Proposed Landfill Gas-to-Energy Project  Power plant to house four 1.6 MW IC engines  Grid connection  $9 to $10 million cost  $40 to $80 million profit  Expected to be operational by end of 2009  Will create 2 full-time and 3 part-time jobs  Will generate enough electricity to power over 4,000 homes a year

29 Considerations…  Combustion emissions regardless of energy recovery  NO x, CO, PM, NMOCs, halogenated compounds  Internal combustion engines  Least expensive  Most efficient at generating electricity  Release largest amounts of NO 2 and PM  CO emissions second only to flaring  Least efficient at controlling halogenated compounds

30 Considerations…  Landfills must be currently operating/recently closed with ≤ 1,000,000 tons of waste-in-place  Economically viable for only 30 years after closing  Projects can only operate at their max. capacities  Dependent on wastefulness

31 Conclusion  Landfill Methane Outreach Program  ↓ methane by 28 million MTCE = removing 19 million passenger cars from the road for 1 year  Accomplished using existing technologies  Sewage treatment plants, livestock waste-to-energy Refuse  Resource

32 Sources  Forster, P., et al. Changes in Atmospheric Constituents and in Radiative Forcing; Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK,  Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: Office of Atmospheric Programs; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC,  Manahan, S. E. Environmental Chemistry, 8 th Ed.; CRC Press: Boca Raton, FL,  Methane as a Greenhouse Gas. U.S. Climate Change Science Program Office. methane18jan2006.pdf (accessed April 9, 2008).  Methane: Sources and Emissions. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (accessed April 12, 2008),  Wuebbles, D.; Hayhoe, K. Atmospheric methane and global change. Earth-Science Reviews. [Online] 2002, 57,  Turning a Liability into an Asset: A Landfill Gas-to-Energy Project Development Handbook. Landfill Methane Outreach Program; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC,  Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (accessed April 12, 2008).  Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (accessed April 14, 2008),  Jaramillo, P.; Matthews, H. S. Landfill-Gas-to-Energy Projects: Analysis of Net Private and Social Benefits. Environ. Sci. Technol. [Online] 2005, 39,  Panteli, P. K. Deputy Director of Public Facilities, Chautauqua County Landfill: Ellery, NY. Interviewed April 11,  Emission Factors: Municipal Solid Waste Landfills. Technology Transfer Network, Clearinghouse for Inventories and Emission Factors; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Government Printing Office: Washington, DC,  Good, D. A.; Francisco, J. S. Atmospheric Chemistry of Alternative Fuels and Alternative Chlorofluorocarbons. Chem. Rev. [Online] 2003, 103,  Panteli, P. K. Engineering Report: Landfill Gas Recovery Facility. Chautauqua County Department of Public Facilities, Division of Solid Waste,  Grant to fund conversion of methane into energy. The Buffalo News, December 29,  Municipal Solid Waste. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (accessed April 14, 2008), 2008.


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