Food scraps energy plant to make sizable expansion

Harvest Power has big plans to expand its food scraps and lawn clipping renewable energy facility in Richmond, announcing Wednesday that it will invest $51.7 million into its two facilities, the other outside of Toronto.

Meredith Sorensen, marketing manager for Harvest Power—which two years ago acquired Fraser Richmond Soil and Fibre—said that some of that money will be added to a $4 million investment from the federal government to build the new facility alongside the East-West connector at Fraser Port.

The new multi-million dollar high-solids anaerobic digestion facility at Fraser Richmond Soil and Fibre is already under construction and should be completed over the next year. It will convert food scraps and yard debris from residential and commercial sources into energy, she said.

"You're going to see lots of job growth in the organic diversion industry," Sorensen said.

Sorensen likened the small and compact facility to a series of garage doors, where organics are placed inside and naturally-occurring bacteria are allowed to break it down.

The biogas that's generated by the decomposition process is what's turned into power. What's left over is then composted.

The Richmond facility already processes some 200,000 tons of organic waste into compost, she said.

"It's the highest and best use of organic waste," she said. "We've got to put these resources to work."

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