Waste-to-energy plant for Port of Albany?

green waste energy autoclaveInteresting, and perhaps worth some skepticism: a company called Green Waste Energy has proposed building a waste-to-energy plant at the Port of Albany -- to address both the Albany area's impending trash problem, and to generate energy. [Biz Review] [TU]

The project GWE is proposing is a "thermal conversion" waste plant that would use steam to heat trash in an industrial autoclave (basically a big sealed chamber) to around 320 degree F in the absence of oxygen to break down the trash. Among the resulting products: a gas that could be used to fire a power plant. Here's a video from the company, and here's a clip from the blurbage about its technology (link added):

Unlike old-fashioned mass-burn or incinerator facilities, our Green Energy Centers do not burn and therefore do not pollute. Our patents are on advanced thermal conversion technology. When biomass is heated with no oxygen it gasifies to a syngas with about 66% of the energy of natural gas.
C6 Technology is an advanced conversion technology that has the ability to produce a clean, high calorific value gas from a wide variety of waste and biomass streams. The hydrocarbon content of the waste is converted into a gas, which is suitable for utilization in gas engines to generate green electricity.

It might good in theory, but practice -- and financing, and permitting, and everything -- often proves harder than theory. And while the the trash conversion may not directly create pollution that escapes, burning the gas to fire the power plant would. Nothing's free. The TU reported that GWE's technology is already in use by South African company.

Also, something that's a bit unexpected to us: the founders of the company are an attorney, who also founded an "online debt resolution" company (and was on the board of a different waste-to energy company), and the "managing director of a successful chain of restaurants in the NE US."

But all that trash will have to go somewhere. The Albany landfill, which takes trash from more than 200k people in the area, is projected to be full by the end of this decade.

Earlier on AOA: Albany switches to single-stream recycling

photo: Green Waste Energy

Comments

It's not plasma arc gasification, but it's a start.

@Tim - I was about to say the same. I'm intrigued.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

A quick recap of the week

Here are a few highlights from the past week on AOA: + We gave away tickets for this year's Champagne on the Park by asking:... (more)

Today's moment of spring

Pretty sweet... for a crabapple.... (more)

Go see the tulips, don't wait

Important news: The Washington Park tulip beds are blooming. As of Friday afternoon we'd say about 65 percent of the tulips were in bloom, and... (more)

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis at Troy Music Hall

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis will be at the Troy Music Hall October 7 for a show. Tickets go on sale... (more)

Stuff to do this weekend

On your marks. Get set. Weekend. Before you go out, be sure and have rain boots, sun screen, and a heavy sweater handy -- this... (more)

Recent Comments

I feel that when people don't confront inappropriate behavior it sends a signal that it is tolerated. I often speak up in situations like these, depending on my reading of the situation. If we consider ourselves part of a community we all have a role to play in signaling what is and isn't appropriate behavior.

Thinking about affordable housing in Albany

...has 6 comments, most recently from Jeff D

Stuff to do this weekend

...has 3 comments, most recently from KGB

The Fort Orange General Store is re-opening

...has 5 comments, most recently from Rich

Today's moment of spring

...has 1 comment, most recently from jsc

Old trees out, new trees soon

...has 1 comment, most recently from jsc