Seattle City Councilmember Bruce Harrell

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Apr 12 2009

Landfill = More Clean Energy for Your Seattle City Light

Published by at 8:16 pm under Energy & Technology Committee

Recently, I was successful in getting legislation passed that allows Seattle City Light to enter into a 20-year renewable power purchase agreement with Waste Management Renewable Energy LLC (WM). I am pleased to announce that this legislation was passed by the Full Council on April 6, 2009. The passage of this legislation adds another element to City Light’s renewable energy portfolio which is required by I-937 to show that 15 percent of all power is generated by new and renewable sources by 2020. It must be noted that City Light’s clean hydroelectric power does not fit the criteria to be included within I-937 as a renewable resource.

WM plans to build, own and operate a 6.4 MW electric generating facility at the Columbia Ridge landfill site, located in the city of Arlington, Oregon, and then sell the renewable energy to Seattle City Light. Energy is created by the decomposition of waste in landfills which produces methane gas. In turn, the gas is used to fuel engine or turbine driven electricity generators. This new energy is expected to be online by October 2009. Not only does City Light gain a clean, renewable source of energy, the Utility also receives the renewable energy credits (REC) that come along with it.

This is a great deal for the City of Seattle and ensures that City Light is able to continue their mission of providing you with low cost, reliable, clean energy.

Photo credit: Andy Rogers/Seattle Post-Intelligencer;

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