Tin Mountain Conservation Center presents a truly remarkable Earth Day presentation on nationally recognized sustainable energy in action right here in New Hampshire. The University of New Hampshire’s ECOLine Project, recently named an EPA Project of the Year, uses methane gas from a neighboring landfill to power the campus. UNH’s David Bowley will present on how a public university developed and funded a project of this magnitude as well as the key technical challenges encountered and how they have been addressed.
In 2009, the University of New Hampshire completed a $49 million landfill gas system that will provide up to 85% of the campus energy. The system utilizes methane, a naturally occurring by-product of landfill decomposition, for energy generation at the University’s cogeneration plant (combined heat and electricity facility). Raw landfill gas is siphoned from the Turnkey Landfill in Rochester, where it is purified and compressed before traveling through a 12.6 mile pipeline to the UNH cogeneration (COGEN) plant, where it is used as the primary fuel source for both heat and electricity. Landfill gas was first used as fuel in May 2009. By August 2009, 79% of the fuel energy used in the COGEN plant was from landfill gas.
The $49 million project has an expected 10-year payback. In addition, the University has started selling renewable energy certificates (RECs) connected with ECOLine’s electricity generation to financially support additional energy efficient projects on campus.
David Bowley, ECOLine Project Manager and UNH Utility Systems Manager, will discuss his experiences in the planning and executing of the nation’s first university landfill gas-to-energy project. In his current role, Dave coordinates the operations for ECOLine gas processing and energy production. He is also the Contract Administrator for ECOLine and UNH conduit with the energy partners responsible for campus distribution of steam, hot water, and high-voltage electric. Scott Lindquist, UNH Supervisor of Energy, also will be on hand to discuss campus distribution and cooling.
This special Earth Day Presentation is part of Tin Mountain’s Nature Program Series and is sponsored in part by L.L. Bean and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Donations of $3 per person and $5 per family are appreciated; members are free. For reservations, call 447-6991.