There’s the Garbage Queen Victoria Reinhardt, Ramsey County Commissioner, promoting the Joint Powers of Ramsey and Washington County’s dream of buying a RDF processing facility in Newport, one that’s now a private entity that they’re contracted with to handle their garbage!  Why buy it?  Why lock the counties into decades of grinding up garbage?  They couldn’t answer that.

And it’s a bit of a conflict, as after they grind it up and turn garbage into RDF, they send it down here to burn it.  Thanks Ramsey & Washington Counties.  Let’s be clear here — you need to deal with YOUR garbage problem, and not send it to us, and not put it in our lungs.

They talked some about “what ifs,” like dreams/nightmares of anaerobic digestion and garbage gasification, but that is not dealing with their problem.  It’s an issue of REDUCTION, REUSE, RECYCLING.  How difficult is that?

More Value Less Trash_Open Houses Powerpoint

Here’s their site and read between the lines for the plan:

More Value Less Trash

Last night’s meeting was at Century College, which was 916 Area Vo-Tech when I went there and emerged in 1983 with a Truck Driver Certificate and the first of a few jobs of over the road driving that got me through a BA at Metro State!  It’s changed a lot, big expansion, and the trucks are no longer there, but offsite.

The next “Talkin’ Trash” garbage open houses will be 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.:

• Tuesday, April 21, in the Marsden Room of the Ramsey County Department of Public Works building, 1425 Paul Kirkwold Drive in Arden Hills.
• Thursday, April 23, in lower level conference room 14 at the Washington County Government Center, 14949 62nd St.t N., Stillwater.
• Monday, April 27, in at the Newport City Hall, 596 Seventh Ave., Newport.
• Tuesday, April 28, in Auditorium A of the Wilder Foundation, 451 Lexington Parkway N. in St. Paul.

Here are the latest reports that they’ve generated…  they lose it by only looking at burning or landfilling — there’s a much wider range of options.  And the Foth Report (first up) should make you froth:

Foth Analysis of Mixed Waste Processing
This study examines the potential of adding Mixed Waste Processing Technology at Newport and the costs associated with adding the technology.

Ownership Analysis
This analysis includes looking at the current Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) processing facility and also looking at other technologies that may be used to process MSW.

Governance Report
This policy study investigates the governance options available to the counties, describes the process to implement and consequences associated with each.

Waste Delivery Assurance Analysis and Options
This document provides an overview of options for assuring delivery of mixed municipal solid waste, and potentially other solid wastes, to the Newport Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) Facility or another resource recovery facility involving Ramsey and Washington Counties.

Technology Comparative Analysis
This report compares the three options analyzed in the Preliminary Resource Recovery Feasibility Report to the current RDF System and to landfilling.

Preliminary Resource Recovery Feasibility Report
This report addresses the technologies selected for continued evaluation by the Ramsey/Washington Counties Resource Recovery Project as part of the future of waste processing decision process.

Clark County, WA & biomass

April 23rd, 2011


Clark County is headed down the wrong path… burning “biomass” in the wrong-headed notion that it’s G-R-E-E-N, with little regard for the toxic emissions that will spew from this plant, and it’s “carbon neutral” NOT!  Recently, somebody from Clark County was searching for “Rockford MN biomass” and ended up on my site, which is a good thing, because then at least they might get some reality about what’s proposed.

They’re looking at a district heating project similar to the Midtown Burner (Midtown Eco-Crapper) proposed for Phillips, in Minneapolis, and thankfully it was run out of town, developers then tried for the City of Rockford, MN, and it was run out of town, and then the township of Rockford, and it’s history there too!

As with the Midtown burner, this Vancouver biomass plant is proposed for the middle of Vancouver — the worst place possible for projects like this that will spew emissions!

Spew emissions?  HUH?  Well DUH, and here’s Alan Muller’s presentation on the Midtown burner:

Saying NO! to permits for Midtown Eco-Energy

What do the Clark County biomass project promoters say?

But Candee Hatch, an air quality consultant with Lake Oswego-based Bridgewater Group who was a consultant on the study, said opposition to such a facility is likely colored by what older, dirtier biomass plants looked like.

“Technology-wise, these facilities are not like they used to be 20 years ago, and a lot of the perception about what wood-burning is comes from what we used to do,” she said. “Those facilities don’t look like that anymore.”

Oh, please…  show us your emissions, Candee!!!

Here are some specifics about annual emissions from a recent similar biomass district heat project:





… and the Clark Count proposal?  Here’s some info:

Clark County District Heating (biomass project) page

Here’s the fuel study, where they claim to have enough fuel:

Fuel Study – January 2011

What’s missing is specifics on emissions — come on, folks, out with it!!!

And an article from The Oregonian:

Clark County commissioners give downtown Vancouver biomass plant a green light

Published: Wednesday, April 20, 2011, 2:28 PM
This concept drawing shows the site of a proposed downtown biomass plant from the intersection of West 13th Street and Ingalls Street facing southeast. The building at left is the Clark County Public Service Center.

Clark County will move ahead with its plan for a wood-burning heating and cooling plant in downtown Vancouver by seeking a private-sector partner and land-use permits from the city.

Read the rest of this entry »

HERC at it again

January 9th, 2011


And for some “big picture” emissions info, here’s the latest Toxic Release Inventory from the EPA:

TRI – 2010 in sortable Excel

Hennepin County and the MPCA have released their “Environmental Assessment Worksheet” for the HERC burner, together with supporting documents.   Check ’em out:

HERC Environmental Assessment Worksheet

Covanta HHRA Report


As you read through them, note the dates… some of it goes back to 2009, some 2008 and some 2006!

There will be a public comment period and a public meeting following publication in the EQB Monitor.  Here’s the EQB Monitor site to check, it’s not there  yet…

EQB Monitor site

For more info, keep an eye on the Neighbors Against the Burner site.

Kandiyohi Development is at it again, trying to ram through an incinerator in Rockford, Minnesota.  Here’s a prior post:

Kandiyohi moves to Rockford?

Apparently, their plans to site in in the City of Rockford crashed, so they went to the neighboring township.  Yesterday, they went down in flames in both Rockford Township and Wright County where they’re trying to locate this thing — both local governments, on hearing their pitch to be exempted from utility personal property taxes and asking for their blessing, said NO!  We’re not signing off on a utility personal property tax exemption!

The School Board is next…

Here’s the bill that they’re trying to get through the legislature, SF 703 and HF 845 that needs to be stopped pronto:

1.8    Subd. 90. Biomass electrical generation facility; personal property.
1.9    Notwithstanding subdivision 9, paragraph (a), attached machinery and other personal
1.10  property which is part of an electrical generation facility that meets the requirements of
1.11   this subdivision is exempt. At the time of construction, the facility must:
1.12     (1) have a generation capacity of less than 30 megawatts;
1.13     (2) be located within a township with a population of less than 7,000;
1.14     (3) be located on land within five miles of a distribution substation;
1.15     (4) be designed to utilize biomass as a primary fuel source;
1.16     (5) be owned by a limited liability company, limited liability partnership or
1.17   corporation, any of which must be registered in Minnesota; and
1.18     (6) have received by resolution the approval of the governing body of the county,
1.19   township, and school board in which the proposed facility is to be located for the
1.20   exemption of personal property under this subdivision.
1.21   Construction of the facility must be commenced before January 1, 2013. Property
1.22   eligible for this exemption does not include electric transmission lines and interconnections
1.23   or gas pipelines and interconnections appurtenant to the property or the facility.
1.24   EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Who to contact about this?  It’s been sent to the House Tax Committee and the Senate Energy Committee, so start there.

Authors to blame for this are:  Senators Koch, Dibble and Dille,  and Representatives Emmer, Dill and Rukavina.

Click here to contact them:

Senator Amy Koch

Senator Scott Dibble

Senator Steve Dille

Representative Tom Emmer

Representative David Dill

Representative Tom Rukavina

Call and email them today!

You’d think that Dill and Rukavina would have learned with that Laurentian biomass burner that violated its permit and had to be shut down, the MPCA had to rework the permit so that it could even run, and it has been having so many problems and is out of service so often that the ratepayers are FURIOUS!

Here’s the language we added to the Mesaba bill, now Minn. Stat. 272.02, Subd. 55, to require “payment in lieu of taxes” which would tank the project:

To qualify for an exemption under this subdivision, the owner of the electric generation facility must have an agreement with the host county, township or city, and school district, for payment in lieu of personal property taxes to the host county, township or city, and school district.

I think this is the one for the Invenergy plant in Cannon Falls, Minn. Stat. 272.02, Subd. 69:

To qualify under this subdivision, an agreement must be negotiated between the municipal power agency and the host city, for a payment in lieu of property taxes to the host city.