Waste Management to turn methane to natural gas in Watford

An aerial view of Twin Creeks Landfill in Watford.

Waste Management is hoping to turn methane into natural gas at its Watford landfill.

The company hasn’t revealed its plans for the project yet, however Enbridge Gas is working on the first part of the project – a pipeline which will carry the finished project to its existing pipeline.

Alissa Lee, the project manager from Dillon Consulting, says the project involves the construction of a new renewable natural gas injection station at the Waste Management Twin Creeks site. The station will push the finished product – natural gas made from methane produced naturally in landfill operations – through a four-inch steel pipeline from Watford to Alvinston – about 20 kilometres.

The project is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by about 70,000 tonnes per year, which is like taking 28,000 cars off the road.

Waste Management officials have yet to release details of the Watford project, however in a similar project completed by Waste Connections in Chatham-Kent saw an investment of $50 million at the Ridge Landfill for a project which was about 30 per cent larger and reduces 110,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

Lee says Enbridge the company only releases the proposed cost of the pipeline project after the Ontario Energy Board has given permission for the project.

Enbridge is just beginning its consultation on the pipeline. It has to prove to the Ontario Energy Board there is a need for the project as well as the natural environment, outline safety measures and describe how Enbridge would mitigation and monitoring of the pipeline.

A public open house was held Tuesday in Watford and an online presentation can be found at www.watfordpipelineproject.ca.

Lee says Enbridge would like to build the pipeline along Old Walnut Road. It’s also considering a second route which has the potential to cut through farmland and a bush area.

The consultation website is open until Dec. 18. Comments are being accepted until Jan. 13. If the OEB approves the project, construction could begin in 2024.

Twin Creeks is one of the largest landfills in Ontario. It already diverts methane produced by the landfill to Twin Creeks Greenhouse – a 40-acre greenhouse which produces peppers. The methane is used to power the company’s boilers to produce heat.