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Sustainability

Waste-to-fuels plants move ahead

by Alexander H. Tullo
January 7, 2019 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 97, ISSUE 1

 

Waste-to-fuel start-ups Fulcrum Bioenergy and Enerkem may soon have new plants in the US. Fulcrum has selected Gary, Indiana, as the location for a plant that will process 640,000 metric tons of Chicago-area trash into 125 million L of fuel per year. The company makes the fuels by treating the garbage in a gasification and Fischer-Tropsch process. Fulcrum says its fuel has a fifth of the global warming footprint of conventional fuels. The company plans to begin construction in 2020 and complete the plant within two years. It’s also building a waste-to-fuels plant, expected to be the country’s first, in Nevada. Separately, Enerkem’s project in the Minneapolis–St. Paul area got a major lift when the Metropolitan Council agreed to provide reclaimed wastewater to a proposed facility. That plant, which also will use a gasification process, could start up in 2021. Enerkem operates a facility in Edmonton, Alberta, and is developing a project in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

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