SEE Gen Burnaby Incinerator

Sustainability 2003 Award Winner The tall red and white striped exhaust stack of the GVRD’s Waste-to-Energy Facility (WTEF) in Burnaby is a new flag of sustainability in the GVRD. Built in 1988 to handle over 20% of the region’s solid waste, the facility now generates electricity as well. Over 250,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste are handled at the WTEF each year utilizing three separate processing lines. Built to meet the highest standards of environmental sustainability, it was only the second facility of its kind in North America to qualify for the rigorous ISO 14001 environmental standard. Historically steam from the waste-to-energy facility has been sold to the nearby Norampac paper recycling mill. However, not all of the steam could be utilized by the mill. The plant operators, Montenay Inc., and GVRD engineers saw the excess steam as an opportunity to make the plant more sustainable. They found that generating electricity from the steam and selling the power to BC Hydro provided social, economic and environmental benefits. – Producing electricity from garbage created four new full-time jobs, creating positive social impacts. – Selling the electricity to BC Hydro will generate gross revenues of $5-6 million a year for the GVRD, an economic benefit for the region’s residents. – Reducing the need to generate power elsewhere creates a positive environmental impact. In fact, if BC Hydro had to generate the same power at its Burrard Thermal gas-fired generating station, it would produce 59,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases. Because the project meets social, economic and environmental tests, engineers took the initial letters of the three sustainability tests and called it the SEE-Gen project. Work on the project started in late 2001, using the best available technology. For example, low-noise designs prevent disturbance to wildlife and the surrounding community and an air-cooled condenser reduces the need for cooling water. The SEE-Gen project commenced commercial operation in July 2003. The SEE-Gen project will produce 15 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 15,000 homes. Project engineers are still looking for more savings including ways to generate additional steam and a proposal to sell residual heat from the turbogenerator to a nearby industrial development.
from: GVRDdocument: SEE Gen Burnaby Incineratorin detailsee also: GVRD Sustainable Region Initiative XlnkS5E8 XlnkC179D

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