Last week the city of Escondido announced the official start-up of the first renewable energy project in California to purify wastewater biogas so that it meets state standards for natural gas delivered to homes and businesses.
The city of Escondido’s Hale Avenue Resource Recovery Facility is the test site of an innovative new pressure swing adsorption system that takes raw gas produced from the facility’s normal operation and upgrades it through a multi-stage process to pipeline-quality natural gas. Biogas from wastewater treatment plants is a largely untapped source of renewable energy.
“The city is always looking for opportunities to take advantage of green technologies,” said Sam Abed, mayor of Escondido. “This project will demonstrate a new technology that will potentially reduce our city’s carbon footprint by decreasing greenhouse gas emissions at the Hale Avenue Resource Recovery Facility,” he said. “An added bonus is the fact that the recovery and reuse of this methane gas will save money for our city’s ratepayers.”
The $2.7 million demonstration project is expected to continue for up to 12 months in order to prove that this technology can cost-effectively produce renewable natural gas that reliably meets California’s stringent gas quality standards. After that, the equipment will be put into commercial use on-site or, if necessary, moved to an alternative location. The demonstration project will be funded by SoCalGas’ research and development group.
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