Southern Company Gas takes over landfill RNG plant

Southern Company Gas has taken ownership of the Meadow Branch Landfill Methane Recovery Facility, a renewable natural gas (RNG) plant in Tennessee, US.

The facility is located at the Meadow Branch Landfill in Athens, run by sister company PowerSource. The plant is now operated by Southern Company Gas Renewables, a new subsidiary dedicated to growing Southern Company Gas’s ability to provide customers with sustainable fuels.

The company is pursuing RNG as part of Southern Company’s goal to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions enterprise-wide by 2050, and its strategy to increase access to clean, safe, reliable, and affordable fuel for customers.

The RNG facility captures gas produced by the landfill and upgrades it to pipeline-quality gas that can be used by any natural gas appliance or another end-user, creating a simple, cost-effective solution for customers.

In 2020, the facility produced 340,000 MMBtu of RNG, enough to serve around 3,400 homes for a year. Using this instead of natural gas prevents nearly 18,000 tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere every year. According to Southern Company Gas, it would require 22,000 acres of US forest to abate that much CO2 over the same period.

“This is another important step toward realising our vision for a sustainable energy future,” said Bryan Batson, Southern Company Gas executive vice-president of external affairs and chief public and external affairs officer, who provides oversight of the new subsidiary.

“Developing RNG to sell to customers is a practical, cost-effective method for reducing GHG emissions.

“The experience we gain operating the Meadow Branch RNG plant will give us a greater ability to develop utility-owned RNG facilities throughout our footprint, helping to enable each of our subsidiaries to meet state and regional climate goals.

“We believe RNG offers an economical path forward for reducing emissions while supporting local development and job creation.”

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