- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
St. Lucie County, Fla., plans to apply plasma arc technology to its municipal trash to provide energy and aggregates, the Associated Press reported.
The facility is expected to cost $425 million and take two years to complete. A powerful electric arc will vaporize 3,000 tons of trash per day to form a gas, which will be used to power turbine generators. The electricity will be sold back to the grid. Tests have shown that the power produced will exceed the power required to operate the plasma arc. Materials in the landfill will be processed over the next 18 years. While not all of the material will be vaporized, the facility expects the slag-like metal oxides that are formed can be used as aggregate for a variety of uses.
While some people are skeptical that emissions can be controlled from such an operation, the EPA suggested the technology will help solve one of our nation’s problems of dwindling landfill space.