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B.C. expands gas-capture system for Vancouver Landfill Project

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British Columbia is investing $4.2 million to expand the Vancouver Landfill Project’s gas-capture system, which turns landfill emissions into renewable natural gas.

Funded by CleanBC Industry Fund and the City of Vancouver, the investment aims to remove an estimated 485,000 tonnes of carbon-dioxide equivalent over the next decade as organic materials naturally break down and release greenhouse gases, including methane and carbon dioxide.

“By working with the province, we’re able to capture more carbon pollution at the Vancouver landfill and use it to power the city’s activities and create new low-carbon opportunities in the local economy,” announced Sarah Kirby-Yung, deputy mayor and councillor for the City of Vancouver, in a statement.

The Vancouver Landfill Project — actually located in the nearby City of Delta — will expand the current landfill gas-collection system by installing a system of wells, collectors and piping to capture methane and carbon dioxide that would otherwise be vented to the atmosphere and cause more noticeable odours, local officials explained. Landfill gas will now be transported for refining into usable renewable natural gas that will be sold to FortisBC and incorporated into the company’s natural gas distribution system for residents, businesses and the city’s buildings, vehicles and neighbourhood energy utility.

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In 2020, for instance, approximately 73% of the gas emitted by the landfill was captured.

“The Vancouver Landfill Project is our largest renewable natural gas project to date and a key part of our 30BY30 plan to reduce customers’ greenhouse gas emission by 30% by 2030,” announced Joe Mazza, vice-president of energy supply and resource development, FortisBC.

The project upgrades will increase both the total amount of gas captured and the proportion used for renewable natural gas.

The Vancouver Landfill has been in operation since 1966 and serves approximately 40% of the Greater Vancouver region.

“Through this investment, we will have an important example of upcycling waste into a valuable resource that will produce fuel with a lower carbon footprint, while also creating jobs in B.C.,” announced Karen Tam Wu, B.C. regional director at the Pembina Institute.

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