The Greenwood Commissioners of Public Works in South Carolina is participating in a project that will create renewable natural gas for use in the public power utility’s gas distribution system.
Construction of the project at the Twin Chimneys Landfill site in Honea Path, South Carolina, began earlier this month. It is being built by Enerdyne Power Systems based in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Enerdyne Power Systems is part of The Landfill Group, which works in partnership with LS Power, a development, investment and operating company focused on the power and energy sectors.
The project will use landfill gas, a byproduct of decomposing waste, that will be collected at the Twin Chimneys site and converted into renewable natural gas that will be injected into the natural gas system owned and operated by the Greenwood Commissioners of Public Works.
When in commercial operation, expected by fourth-quarter 2022, the Twin Chimneys Power Producers (TCPP) project is expected to initially produce approximately 1,200 million metric British thermal units (MMBtu) of renewable natural gas per day.
Eventually, the project is expected to be capable of producing about 3,000 MMBtu per day.
All development, construction and operations of the project will be managed by other Landfill Group companies.
“We are excited to be a part of this first in the state project for a local gas company to receive processed landfill gas directly into its system for distribution to customers,” Jeff Meredith, general manager of Greenwood Commissioners of Public Works, said in a statement. “This project has truly been a collaborative effort between Greenville County, TCPP and Greenwood [Commissioners of Public Works] to make a positive impact on the environment and provide value to the customers we serve.”
The environmental benefits of the Twin Chimneys project are equivalent to reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by more than 28 million gallons of gasoline, according to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) analysis, LS Power said in a statement.
Currently there is not a standard definition of renewable natural gas (RNG), according to the EPA, which developed it as a term of art for its voluntary RNG projects.
Biogas, such as landfill gas, has a methane content of between 45 and 65 percent and must be converted to renewable natural gas through a series of steps, including removing moisture, CO2, trace contaminants, and reducing nitrogen and oxygen content, to bring the methane content up to 90 percent or greater. Typically, renewable natural gas injected into a natural gas pipeline has a methane content between 96 and 98 percent, according to the EPA.
The benefits of using renewable natural gas include reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving local air quality, boosting the local economy, and promoting fuel diversity, the EPA says.
“This project represents a major economic investment in Greenville County that will result in a significant reduction in CO2 emissions,” Michael Frixen, sustainability coordinator for the City of Greenville, said in a statement. He noted that Greenville is developing a new sustainability plan that will identify strategies to reduce the city’s CO2 emissions and overall environmental footprint.