Environmental Protection

Ox Mountain Landfill Project Powers Alameda, Palo Alto

A landfill gas to energy station at Republic Services' Ox Mountain Landfill in Half Moon Bay began operation on July 1.

Owned and operated by a subsidiary of Ameresco, Inc., the plant will supply enough renewable energy to Alameda and Palo Alto to power more than 11,900 average-sized homes.

"It's an ideal green energy solution," said George Sakellaris, president, Ameresco, Inc. The Ox Mountain landfill has been in operation since 1976 and will continue accepting garbage for another 35 years.

Jeff Andrews, senior vice president West Region, Republic Services, Inc., said, "This is a larger plant in terms of renewable electricity production from landfill gas and also represents the current best available technology for emissions controls, making it an extremely clean renewable energy source."

The annual electricity generated by the project will prevent the release of 71,000 tons of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The electric output of the plant will be sold to existing customers and project partners – the cities of Palo Alto and Alameda.

City of Palo Alto Utilities is the only municipal utility in California that operates city-owned utility services for electric, fiber optic, natural gas, water, and wastewater. The city of Palo Alto has adopted goals of meeting 30 percent of its electric needs by 2012 using renewable resources. Palo Alto's share of the project is projected to supply about 4 percent of the city's electric needs.

The Alameda Municipal Power will receive about 11 percent of the electricity it needs from the project. It is one of three landfill-gas-to-energy resources presently powering Alameda. These will be joined later this year by the facility at Republic Services' Keller Canyon Landfill. By the close of 2009, 22 percent of Alameda's power will be generated by landfill gas-to-energy plants.

Alameda Municipal Power, the "greenest little utility in America," buys 85 percent of its power from renewable energy resources.

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