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City of Palo Alto, California Finds Power In Decomposing Trash

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posted on Dec, 30 2004 @ 01:42 AM
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My hometown, Palo Alto, is turning to a novel source to generate electricity. We have the benifit of being a city owned utility so our electricty rates would make you gag. If I run the central air during the summer, our electricy may spike to say $25. Thats including the extra I pay for Palo Alto Green (Requires that the utility buy more energy from renewable sources). The city has found a new way to generate ven more power and not contribute to pollution


Pushing to buy at least 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, Palo Alto has turned to a new supply: rotting garbage in Watsonville.

The city utilities department has inked a deal to buy ``green'' electricity created by the methane gas that seeps out of the buried, decomposing garbage in the Santa Cruz County landfill.

'I think it reflects what our community wants, what our council has directed us to do,'' said Girish Balachandran, an assistant manager of the utilities department.

Palo Alto will buy enough of the landfill electricity to power about 1,500 homes. That will slightly reduce the air pollution from traditional power plants and lessen dependence on non-renewable resources such as oil and natural gas, according to city officials.

Flammable methane percolates up through the ground in landfills across the country. In the first season of concerts at Shoreline Amphitheater, built in 1986 on an old landfill in Mountain View, gas often filtered through the lawn, smelling nasty and occasionally catching fire before the problem was fixed.

Gas




posted on Dec, 30 2004 @ 02:36 AM
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This is great news FredT
I wish all cities could learn from Palo Alto..



posted on Jan, 2 2005 @ 10:33 AM
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Well in a strange way, you would expect Silicon Valley to lead the way, seeing as they *are* the high-tech capital of the world


Osiris



posted on Jan, 2 2005 @ 11:07 AM
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Originally posted by otlg27
Well in a strange way, you would expect Silicon Valley to lead the way, seeing as they *are* the high-tech capital of the world


Osiris


In this case silicon valley did not lead the way. Many power plants have been using methane/biogas since 2001 for sure and possibly earlier. It is however nice to see that others are following suit.

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posted on Jan, 2 2005 @ 11:17 AM
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Shots:

Oh I'm well aware a lot of work has been done with respect to Methane reclamation.. my statement was rather tongue-in-cheak...

Osiris





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