From the City of Tampa's web site. Florida's Renewable Energy Source
By Nancy McCann
Converting waste into energy is a worldwide industry. In the United States alone, 89 waste-to-energy facilities process nearly 100,000 tons of municipal solid waste – everyday household and commercial garbage and trash – each day. As a result, these facilities generate enough electricity to meet the needs of more than two million homes.
In Florida, 12 waste-to-energy facilities from Miami to Panama City process nearly 20,000 tons of municipal solid waste each day – enough to fill a football stadium – while continuously producing over 500 megawatts of clean, renewable power. The Tampa Bay area is home to four waste-to-energy facilities, located in the City of Tampa and in the counties of Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco. Without these facilities, local governments would be faced with the daunting task of siting large landfills near our rapidly growing residential communities.
Florida's waste-to-energy facilities eliminate 90% of the waste that once would have been landfilled. Even so, landfills throughout the state are reaching capacity faster than anticipated. It is becoming increasingly difficult to expand landfills or open new ones as residential development encroaches on once-remote landfill sites. Florida's current population of over 17 million is expected to reach almost 23 million by the year 2020, bringing even more challenges to managing municipal solid waste. . . .
. . . . . In keeping with the Clean Air Act, waste-to-energy facilities in Florida and throughout the United States have recently been retrofitted with state-of-the-art air emission control technology. As a result, these facilities are among the cleanest sources of renewable power in the world. Waste-to-energy facilities reduce our dependence on foreign oil and fossil fuels, significantly reduce the amount of waste that needs to be landfilled, and are good partners to recycling in our local communities' waste management programs.
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