FortisBC fuels 'garbage' gas recovery

That odour coming from the Kelowna landfill on Glenmore Drive may soon be the smell of money.

FortisBC has received approval from the BC Utilities Commission for design and construction of a landfill gas purification plant at the Glenmore landfill.

The biogas facility could be up and running by 2014.

The gas, given off naturally through the decaying process of waste in the landfill is captured, purified and injected into FortisBC's natural gas system for use by customers.

The project is expected to avoid 3,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from being released into the atmosphere in the first few years alone. That's the equivalent to taking 600 cars off the road annually.

"We're looking forward to getting started on this project," says Doug Stout with FortisBC.

"Not only is it a positive in terms of environmental benefits, it will also supply FortisBC gas customers in Kelowna with a renewable resource made in their own backyard."

The project is expected to create several indirect local manufacturing and construction-related jobs during the estimated 12 month construction phase.

The City of Kelowna could rake in between $3.1M and $6.9M over the first 20 years of operation depending on the volume and quality of landfill gas harvested.

"Now that the project is approved, we're looking forward to the next step of constructing the plant," says Director of Infrastructure, Randy Cleveland.

"This is a proven technology that will harvest waste and produce a renewable resource."

A similar plant is operational at the Salmon Arm landfill.

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