Quezon City eyes garbage as energy source

by Rima Granali, 11 April 2015
from Philippine Daily Inquirer

With the looming power supply crisis in the country, Quezon City is eyeing the city’s garbage as an energy source.

Mayor Herbert M. Bautista has announced plans of acquiring a waste-to-energy (WTE) facility to scale up efforts in electricity generation.

The facility can produce 36 megawatts of electricity per day from the 2,000 tons of trash disposed of in the Payatas landfill daily, Bautista said in a statement on Friday.

Around P8-10 billion and 10 hectares of land would be needed for the construction of the facility.

The city currently operates the Payatas Controlled Waste Disposal Facility which generates about 40,000 kilowatt per hour (kph) of electricity monthly and supplies electricity to the Meralco power grid and free electricity to surrounding communities.

The facility under the Biogas Emission Reduction Project was registered and approved as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto Protocol by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2008.

WTE is the process of converting waste materials into electricity or heat though combustion. It reduces methane generation from landfill.

Alyansa ng mga Samahang Nagkakaisa sa Payatas, a group of residents living beside the sanitary landfill, asked the Supreme Court in March to stop its operations and expansion as it poses health and environmental hazards.

The high tribunal, however, dismissed the residents’ petition, saying they exposed themselves to these hazards by insisting to stay there.

Bautista also directed the Division of City Schools and the Task Force Streetlights to study the viability of installing solar panels on school roofs.

The mayor earlier issued a directive to the task force to replace the existing high pressure sodium (HPS) in the city’s 22,000 streetlights with light-emitting diodes (LED) bulbs.

President Benigno Aquino III has sought congress for emergency powers last year, citing the projected power shortage in Luzon, especially in 2015 and 2016.

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