Landfill Gas Power New to LADWP, Not New Developments

By Published On: August 27, 2005

Heralding them as the first renewable power contracts under its recently adopted 20 percent renewables portfolio standard, the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power entered two agreements to purchase power from landfill gas projects operated by Penrose Landfill Gas Conversion and WM Solutions Inc. The contracts now must be approved by the Los Angeles City Council. However, neither of them represents new renewables development. “These are strong, economical purchase agreements that will boost the supply of renewable power for Los Angeles,” said Ron Deaton, the department’s general manager. The key difference for WM Solutions is that the department will now purchase the power under a long-term contract, explained Kit Cole, a spokesperson for Waste Management, the parent company. Up until now the department has purchased the power on a short-term as-needed basis. The U.S. Renewables Group recently purchased and retrofitted Penrose with new pollution-control equipment, said Stephen Mullennix, senior director of operations. The previous owner sold the plant’s power to Southern California Edison, he said. The department entered a ten-year agreement with WM Solutions that could total between $19.7 million and $29 million. Under it, the department will purchase at least 36,422 MWh of power a year from the company’s existing plant at the active Bradley Landfill in Sun Valley, north of Los Angeles. WM Solutions operates a 6 MW turbine plant to burn landfill gas and generate power there, according to Cole. That power will cost the department between 5.2 and 5.8 cents/kWh. Under a separate seven-year agreement with Penrose expected to total between $19.4 million and $23.4 million, the department will purchase 45,421 MWh of power annually from the company’s existing 6.5 MW project at the closed-down Penrose Landfill. The power will cost the department between 5.9 and 6.6 cents/kWh.

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