Year 2001 was commemorated in Monterrey‘s history by the launch of the first ever waste-to-energy project in Latin America. Since then, the equivalent of around 1 million tons of CO2 emissions have been turned into light.
The amount of garbage delivered to landfills in the area is estimated to be around 4,500 tones per day. Such amount of organic material is known to produce enormous amount of methane- one of the most dangerous greenhouse gases.
Instead of releasing it in the atmosphere, however, a landfill biogas system was placed by SEISA, the company which handles the gas collection and treatment. The project is supported by the World Bank and it is jointly conducted by Sinaproc, the local public landfill operator.
The area is known to have the most expensive electricity in the whole of Mexico. This revolutionary project, however, reduced the costs while bringing down significantly the amount of greenhouse emissions.
Jaime Saldana, the general director of SEISA, stated that the driving force behind the initiative was to have a sustainable, environmentally friendly project, which will make use of the landfill biogas and supply light to the whole city.
In addition to the financial gains from the sale of electricity, the city is also able to sell carbon credits to the World Bank’s Danish Carbon Fund. While some of the profit goes for maintenance of the biogas system, large portion of it goes for construction and installation of solar photovoltaic panels for local schools.