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CNN Eco Solutions Video Highlight:
Alternative Energy from Trash




14 July 2010

Philippines: Methane Extraction Project Converts Trash into Energy

ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://www.greenfudge.org/2010/07/14/methane-extraction-project-converts-trash-into-energy-in-the-philippines/

The Payatas garbage dump in Quezon City, Philippines is legendary among dumpsites of the world, for its sheer size and also for the desperate living conditions of the many people who subsist by scavenging there.

Payatas made headlines 10 years ago when hundreds of informal settlers perished under a mountain of trash that collapsed during a downpour, burying them alive.

Recently, increased attention has been focused on the Payatas dump, the environmental role of its scavengers – or rather, ‘waste recyclers’ – and an innovative project to convert the waste to energy by harvesting methane. The methane project provides an alternative power source as well as limits greenhouse gases, providing the Philippines with carbon credits.

The thousands of informal recycler families who live in and around Payatas dumpsite struggle to eek out a living in unsanitary conditions, earning around $1 per day. If the Philippine government’s methane to energy project provides these families with free power, it could make a significant improvement in the quality of their lives, which are barely at subsistence level.



1 February 2009

The Payatas Dumpsite: From Tragedy to Triumph

ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://www.quezoncity.gov.ph/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=160:the-payatas-dumpsite-from-tragedy-to-triumph&catid=44:special-features&Itemid=38

In 2007, QC signed an agreement with Italy-based environmental firm Pangea Green Energy and its local counterpart, Pangea Phils., for the development and implementation of the Biogas Emissions Reduction Project. This is the first clean development mechanism (CDM) project in solid waste management in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia.

It was registered under the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on Febrauary 1, 2008. The Project, which converts biogas emissions into electricity, will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an annual average of 116,000 tonnes CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent). It will improve local air, water and soil quality, eliminate fires and explosion hazards and trashslides in the dumpsite.

Aside from generating electricity, employment and building capacity from the transfer of technology and know-how, the City will gain additional financial resources with its share from the sale of CERs (Certified Emission Reduction) or carbon credits and the electricity generated and exported to the grid. This is Quezon City’s humble contribution to the mitigation of global warming and climate change.


Read the whole article here.



1 December 2008

Galing Pook Foundation: Transforming Payatas Dumpsite

ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://www.galingpook.org/main/component/content/article/144-quezon-city

Payatas is a solid waste dumpsite in Quezon City. Back in 2000, it was also home to thousands of the city’s indigent families. Close to 300 people died when the garbage slid down and buried some of the houses which were clustered at the bottom of a particularly precarious, steep section of the cliff-like hill of garbage during a pouring rain.

The following year, the legislators issued Republic Act 9003 or The Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2001, which mandated the closure of all open dumpsites in the country by February 2006. The Quezon City government promptly began to implement pioneering and innovative programs to ensure not only the continued safe operation of the site, but also its successful conversion into a controlled waste disposal facility.

In 2004, the conversion of the dumpsite into a controlled waste disposal facility began. It involved several measures, such as reshaping the slope of the garbage heap, stabilization and greening, drainage system improvement, fortifying roadways and access to the site, gas venting and recovery. In May 2006, the City Government implemented the Final Closure Plan for this facility. In 2007, the Quezon City Controlled Disposal Facility Biogas Emission Reduction Project was approved and registered as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto Protocol by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change last February 1, 2008. The project, an offshoot of the earlier Gas to Power Generation Project, involves extraction, collection, processing, flaring and conversion into electricity of the biogas emissions at the disposal facility.


Read the whole article here.



24 September 2007

Payatas: From Waste to Energy

ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://www.newsbreak.com.ph/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3742&Itemid=88889053

What was once known as a lowly and grimy activity of cleaning up garbage is turning out to be a profitable venture. This is the luck of the Payatas waste disposal system in Quezon City which is becoming the Philippines’ first waste-to-energy project anticipated to be registered with the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) possibly by year-end.

Drilling on the dumpsite, covering a total of 22 hectares, is ongoing. Thirty three gas wells are expected to penetrate 15 to 21 meters deep down into the bottom of the waste pile.

The gas vents (steel pipes that are almost one meter wide in diameter) have slots at certain intervals through which methane gas is absorbed and is then transmitted up toward the planned power facility. By November this year, the Quezon City (QC) Controlled Disposal Facility (CDF), run by the QC local government unit (LGU), expects to have a 200-kilowatt power capacity fueled by methane emitted from the decomposing waste from the site. The project will save fuel cost since methane is taken for free. It will electrify the LGU’s waste dump operation while excess power supply will be sold to the power grid.

However, it is not the income from electricity that’s really prompting investments of P200 million in the Payatas dump site. “It’s not where (good) income will come from. We’re taking the risk here because we know from experience that once it’s approved by the local DNA (designated national authority), it will already get approval (from the CDM executive board),” said Jennifer Fernan Campos, Pangea Green Energy Phils. Inc.(PGEP) president. PGEP is the project developer.

Once registered with the CDM executive board, the Payatas project will enjoy earning carbon credits granted as incentive for reducing emission of the greenhouse gas (GHG) methane which is 21 times more polluting than carbon dioxide (CO2). When captured and flared, methane simply releases CO2, 20 times less the global warming effects of methane.

PGEP, the project developer, is bringing in investments through its parent firm in Italy. It will put up the gas capture and power facility and arrange trading of the certified emission reduction (CERs) units or the carbon credits.

The CDF gas project will bring in a donation of P12 million yearly to the QC LGU out of the CERs. What is impressive about the project is its anticipated impact on community development which is what lured the local government to support it.

“We’ll have cleaner environment. We’ll even have revenue that will be spent for sustainable development. That is one of the objectives of CDM—that income from the credits will go to the community where it came from,” said retired Col. Jameel R M Jaymalin, Payatas operations group head.

Jaymalin dreams of a greener Payatas, far from what it was before, the tragic site where more than 200 people were killed when a mountain of waste collapsed on July 10, 2000. “We hope to put up an industrial area where we will locate the junk shops and give order to the community,” he said. “We’ll have additional classrooms, additional roads and small bridges, health centers, and more mobility for our barangay tanods.”

CER for the biogas project is placed at 116,339 MT yearly over 10 years. That comes from a site where some 1,200 MT of garbage is piled daily. The methane capture will earn yearly CER of 5,449 MT, the CO2 emission avoidance from the power plant, 19,320 MT annually. It will separately earn P10.3 million for 10 years from the sale of electricity given a capacity of 24,000 megawatt hours.

Read the whole article here.




19 June 2007

DENR Reviews "Payatas Biogas Emission Reduction Project"

ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://cdmdna.emb.gov.ph/cdm/public/cdm-updates.php?qSearch=pangea

The “Biogas Emission Reduction Project” of the Quezon City local government is the latest project issued with a letter of approval by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the country’s Designated National Authority (DNA) for the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). According to DENR Secretary Angelo Reyes, who is also the DNA Chair, the project has demonstrated its environmental, social and economic benefits through the extraction and conversion of biogas to energy. “The Quezon City government is aware of the adverse impacts of biogas, on the health of its people and on the environment as a whole. By effectively utilizing biogas, it will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, thus addressing global and regional impacts of climate change,” Reyes said.

Located in Area 2 of Barangay Payatas in Quezon City, the project involves the extraction, collection, processing and conversion of biogas emissions from its 22-hectare controlled disposal facility. Biogas refers to gas produced by fermentation of organic matter such as sludge, municipal solid waste or biodegradable waste. It is mainly composed of methane and carbon dioxide. It can be used for heating or cooking and can be likewise be used for generating electricity. “The Biogas Emission Reduction Project of Quezon City will run for 10 years. During that time, it is expected to reduce an average annual reduction of about 116,339.4 tons of carbon dioxide emission,” Reyes said.

The project involves two phases. The first phase will be composed of a biogas extraction system, a high-temperature torch for flaring the methane extracted and an electrical engine for on-site power supply. The second phase, on the other hand, will begin on the third year, wherein the project will convert a portion of the methane generated to electricity that will be delivered to surrounding communities in the area. Helping the Quezon City government in the project are the Pangea Green Energy S.r.l. and the Pangea Green Energy Philippines Incorporated, a renewable energy company who invests in biogas projects worldwide.

As the Designated National Authority in the Philippines, the DENR evaluates, whether a project activity contributes to sustainable development and whether the Philippine-based project participants have the legal capacity to participate in the proposed project. Reyes added that the said project activity will be registered in the CDM Executive Board in Bonn, Germany. The CDM is a market-based mechanism provided under the Kyoto Protocol, an international agreement designed to assist developing countries such as the Philippines implement projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions.





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