Biosolids to Become Fuel at Southern California Facility

The Rialto Regional Biosolids Processing Facility in Rialto, Calif., completed the first phase of mechanical testing this month and began initial start-up by accepting its first truckload of sewage sludge, according to an Oct. 22 press release from EnerTech Environmental Inc. of Atlanta, Ga.

Under contract, the facility will convert approximately 700 wet tons per day of biosolids, or sewage sludge, from five municipalities in the Los Angeles region into approximately 170 tons per day of renewable fuel. The renewable fuel, called E-Fuel, will be used by a local cement kiln as an alternative to coal. The facility's customers include the Orange County Sanitation District, the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, the City of Riverside, the City of San Bernardino Municipal Water Department, and the City of Rialto.

"The first truckload of biosolids at the facility is a huge milestone for EnerTech and our partners," said Kevin Bolin, the company's chief executive officer. "We have worked for years to realize this moment and the cooperation and tenacity of this team of people—all focused on the goal of creating a renewable energy alternative in California—has been essential to setting the groundwork for this moment."

Once operational, the facility will use the company's patented SlurryCarb™ technology to convert the biosolids into renewable fuel. The use of E-Fuel will offset more than 85,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year in Southern California.

The facility will convert more than 240,000 wet tons of sludge to renewable fuel annually and is expected to be fully operational spring of 2009.

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