Last updated: November 02. 2013 10:46PM - 1532 Views
By - kstrange@civitasmedia.com



Dennis Bledsoe, public works director for Surry County, is pictured with the engine powered by naturally-occurring methane gas that is now producing electricity in the county. A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the project is set Nov. 8.
Dennis Bledsoe, public works director for Surry County, is pictured with the engine powered by naturally-occurring methane gas that is now producing electricity in the county. A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the project is set Nov. 8.
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HOLLY SPRINGS —A ribbon-cutting has been set on a long-anticipated project that will reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of the county while simultaneously making the county a few bucks.


Officials with the Surry County Landfill have announced a Nov. 8 ribbon-cutting on the Gas to Energy Project. The event is set for 2 p.m.


The project, one of the first of its kind public-private partnerships in the area, will collect methane gas that is released at the landfill as a natural by-product of decomposition, clean it and use it to create energy.


Under the project, Petra Engineering installed the collection system, which harvests the methane gas and directs it to a 20-cylinder engine.


The engine, designed specifically by Caterpillar for methane collection, will use the gas to produce 2,250 horsepower, turning the engine to power a 1,600-kilowatt generator.


Officials say the facility will produce enough energy to power 945 homes. It first went operational on June 1, and is producing energy that is being sold to Duke Energy.


“The greenhouse gas reductions from the facility will reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions equal to 13,452 cars,” said Lynn Marshall, a spokesperson for the project.


Barnabas Investment Group and Petra Engineering worked with local officials to develop the project.


The county will receive revenue from Barnabas Investment Group, which installed and operated the collection system, through structured payments from the firm for the first seven years. After that time, the county will receive 25 percent of net revenues from years eight through 20 of the project.


Wayne Marshall, CEO of Petra Engineering, said he looks forward to years of a great working relationship with the county.


“Petra has achieved significant success working with many landfill, county and municipal projects and initiatives,” he said. “We look forward to our continued partnership with Surry County, and being a part of the positive impact this project will have on the county and its residents.”


Reach Keith Strange at kstrange@civitasmedia.com or 719-1929.


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