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Ameresco to build biogas project for water treatment plant

Waste-to-energy company Ameresco is to build a new facility as part of the Northeast Water Pollution Control Plant (NEWPCP) Biogas Project, which will generate electricity and thermal energy for onsite use.

The construction is expected to cost $47.5 million (€35.6 million) and will be designed to generate 5.6MW of power, reducing the plant’s energy costs by more than $12 million during the first 16 years of the contract.

At the moment, half of the biogas created from the wastewater treatment process is used for heat processes at the NEWPCP, whilst the other 50% is being flared, which increases emissions and consumes energy.

The City of Philadelphia wanted to go ahead with the project as part of its plan to achieve green goals that were outlined in a Greenworks Plan written by the city’s mayor, Michael Nutter.

The development is expected to reduce CO₂ by almost 22,000 tonnes a year, which is the equivalent of taking more than 4,800 cars off the road, or planting 5,390 acres of pine forest.

‘This project is an example of PWD’s commitment to develop waste recovery programs at all of our facilities as part of our pledge to be a sustainable and cost-conscious utility,’ says water commissioner Howard Neukrug. ‘Recovering the hidden fuel in our wastewater treatment processes helps to diversify our energy portfolio, while improving the environment through innovative, green technology.’