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Heat generation and emission reductions at landfills

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Gotlands Energy AB and Dürr Megtec teamed up to develop an efficient treatment of landfill gas with low methane concentrations.

Today, up to 2% of total greenhouse gas emissions in Sweden originate from old landfills, where methane gas is released into the atmosphere untreated.

Incineration can destroy methane, which reduces emissions; however, the process is undermined when methane concentrations are too low to support incineration. This was the problem facing energy supplier Gotlands Energy AB (GEAB), which has been using incineration to treat the landfill gas from the Visby landfill in cooperation with the Gotland region since the 1980s.

Visby is a town on the Swedish island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea. The waste heat from the incineration process was used for district heating generation for approximately 100 homes. However, a reduction in the percentage of organic waste in the landfill meant an accompanying reduction in methane gas concentration.

“We have determined that the methane gas concentration is now less than 30%,” said Lisa Larsson, waste engineer for the Gotland region. “As a...

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