Pharos-Tribune

Local News

April 21, 2013

SIDEBAR: Kokomo said no to waste-to-energy

City officials considered trash volumes, technology.

LOGANSPORT — Kokomo has in the past considered a similar option to the one currently being negotiated by Logansport and the proposed power plant’s developer, but ultimately determined the amount of trash required, among other factors, would not provide a suitable outcome.

Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight said over the last few years, the city has considered alternative uses for its municipal solid waste out of a desire to reduce its landfill tipping fees. He said one of these options included developing a plant to use the waste to create electricity. It was ultimately determined the city and others in the area wouldn’t be able to produce enough to supply a realistic option.

“A lot of it came down to volumes to make their businesses work,” he said. “We really couldn’t find the right fit. I can’t speak on Logansport... Our motivation was the money we were spending on landfill tipping fees. Logansport has its own electrical utility. It’s a different motivating factor.”

Kokomo City Engineer Carey Stranahan agreed with Goodnight both on the count that Logansport’s motivation is different from Kokomo’s and that it was ultimately determined the requirements for making these kinds of facilities work could not be met in a worthwhile way, at least for Kokomo.

“Most of the time when you look at those types of facilities, the demand for the municipal solid waste is a lot higher than the supply is,” he said, adding that proposals to the city required about 1,500 tons per day for their facilities when Kokomo itself only produces about 100 tons per day.

Even after exploring acquiring more waste from surrounding cities, it was determined a waste-to-energy option for Kokomo still would not be worthwhile. He did not wish to say which companies the city met with, but said the meetings were informal and money was never spent conducting official analyses.

“You can find trash,” Stranahan said. “If you want 1,500 tons a day, you can get it... It’s a great idea and I’d love to see it come to fruition.”

However, he said companies’ perceived outlooks on what their pilot facilities were capable of were not enough to persuade city officials that a reasonable option for Kokomo could be attained.

“There’s a lot of theory out there and a lot of things that have worked on a small scale but you haven’t seen one type of technology come to the surface as being the best,” Stranahan said. “There isn’t a lot of large scale implementation of these waste-to-energy programs or projects... We perceived some risk in that.”

There were 86 waste-to-energy plants in operation in the United States in 2010, according to the latest data provided by the Energy Recovery Council, a national trade organization representing the waste-to-energy industry. One has been in operation in Indianapolis since 1988 and is owned by Covanta Energy, which owns similar facilities across the world.

Pyrolyzer, which uses a process called pyrolysis to heat feedstock into a gas that will power turbine engines to create electricity, has seen its design come to fruition in two cases in Germany, both much smaller than the plant being proposed for Logansport. The first is a four-ton-per-day facility that has been operated solely for 10 to 15 tests per year since 1999. The second was completed in 2002 and required 37 tons of feedstock per day. It ran for 1,600 hours before its contract was canceled after the customer ran short of funds. The company is also currently developing plants in Georgia, Utah and the Bahamas, all much smaller than the plant being proposed for Logansport.

Despite the fact that Pyrolyzer has never achieved anything on this scale, the study team’s project manager Alvaro Almuina and others involved in the project say the individual elements making up the entire process all work.

“We’re not reinventing the wheel here,” Almuina said. “We’re dealing with proven technologies.”

Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or mitchell.kirk@pharostribune.com.

For more on this story and other local news, subscribe to The Pharos-Tribune eEdition, or our print edition

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • NWS-PT072714 - manhunt pickup - MLK Escapee apprehended in Carroll County w/VIDEO

    The inmate who escaped from the Logansport State Hospital Thursday night was apprehended in Carroll County late Friday morning. Carroll County Sheriff's Department Major Tobe Leazenby said Christopher J. Robbins, 23, Medaryville, was appreh

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • Police Blotter: July 25, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 25, 2014

  • NWS-PT072514-Begindergarten-BCM Focus on kids: Data shows rising poverty, but better education Indiana and Cass County children are making improvements in education, but the poverty rate still stays high, according to national data. The Annie E. Casey Foundation 2014 Kids Count Data Book released its annual evaluation of the nation’s children

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Residents oppose proposed gravel pit in Walton

    WALTON — Engineering Aggregates Corp. wants to dig a gravel pit, and residents around the proposed site are worried that it would interfere with what several called a peaceful country lifestyle. Engineering Aggregates has petitioned the Cass County B

    July 25, 2014 1 Link

  • NWS-PT072514 Billeaud Mug Guilty verdict in flag beating A Logansport man was found guilty in a jury trial Wednesday on counts of felony battery after an altercation in which he was charged with beating a man with a board holding an American flag.Jeffrey Billeaud Jr., 39, was found guilty of battery by mea

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS-PT072514 Patacsil-kmv Logan coaching legend Patacsil dies at 86 Logansport and Purdue University lost a giant among sports leaders Wednesday. Former Purdue great and former Logansport High School wrestling coach and educator Joe Patacsil passed away in his home.When his sons were leading the Berries wrestling pro

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Burlington woman charged in May fatal crash KOKOMO — Police arrested a 26-year-old Burlington woman accused of causing a fatal crash while driving drunk Wednesday.Howard County sheriff deputies served a warrant on Casie E. Johnson charging her with a B felony causing death while operating a ve

    July 25, 2014

  • Robbins Christopher.jpg UPDATE: State Hospital escapee identified

    Police are seeking an escaped inmate of Logansport State Hospital with a history of residential entry and battery.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police Blotter: July 24, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 24, 2014

  • NWS-PT072414 shrek2.jpg Cast of believers: Children take stage this weekend As almost 50 children and teenagers crowded around the edge of the stage at McHale Performing Arts Center, Dan McDonald counted off: one, two, three... “I believe!”It was the start of tech rehearsal for Junior Civic Theater’s production of “Shrek: Th

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

Featured Ads
More pharostribune.com
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

The Pence administration continues to cut Indiana agency budgets despite a state surplus of $2 billion. Is this wise management of state funds?

Yes
No
Not sure
     View Results
eEdition