by- Akinpelu Dada
Lagos begins gas production from waste dumps
Domestic waste, which used to pose a serious challenge to Lagos State, is about to become a huge revenue earner for the state.
Some 15 years ago, solid waste management posed a serious challenge to the government, as Lagos was then regarded as the dirtiest city state in the world.
After some false starts, the government seemed to have got it right with the involvement of the private sector in waste management and the revamp of the state Waste Management Authority to make it more professional and result-oriented.
Having overcome the challenge, the state is now on the verge of turning waste into income generating products with the Landfill Gas Recovery and Utilisation Project.
The project, which is being executed by LAWMA in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme and the African Carbon Asset Development, is meant to capture methane gas from waste, utilise it for electricity, prevent the release of Greenhouse gasses into the environment, reduce Lagos' carbon footprint and ensure compliance with international standards on environmental governance.
The LGRUP is a component of the Lagos Integrated Solid Waste Management Project, which is a Public-Private Partnership project whereby the government will execute a 20-year concession agreement with the private sector.
Among other benefits, the LGRUP is meant to bequeath better environmental health and living standard; ensure job creation and investment opportunities; provide public utility and infrastructure through public-private partnership; wealth creation and market-based solution for waste.
The LISWMP is for the closure, collection and utilisation of landfill gas at the existing dumpsites; and the establishment of an integrated solid waste management facility comprising a material recovery facility, recycling and composting facility as well as sanitary landfill for residual use.
The objectives of the project are to fully harness and utilise alternative options available in managing waste, thus reducing reliance on landfill disposal as well as minimise the emission of greenhouse gases, while managing waste in an environmentally sound, socially responsible and financially sustainable manner.
LAWMA is in the process of implementing the second phase of the project under a consultancy contract. The first phase, which comprises pre-engineering design, commenced in February 2011 and should be completed within 12 to 18 months.
Starting with the Olusosun landfill site in Ojota, the Green Development Mechanism project will also be extended to the Abule-Egba and Solous landfill sites.
The Managing Director, LAWMA, Mr. Ola Oresanya, said, "At the Olusosun landfill, we have developed gas wells to manage and recycle municipal solid waste into clean energy. Landfill gas can be generated 24 hours per day, seven days a week.
"Landfill gas is extracted from landfills using a series of wells and a blower or vacuum system. This system directs the collected gas to a central point where it can be processed and treated depending on the ultimate use for it.
"Landfill gas to energy projects do not only mean deceasing the hazards towards our climate; they also serve as a substitute for fossil fuels, such as natural gas. Landfill gas can be extracted for a variety of energy purposes, such as generation of electricity with engines, turbines, micro turbines and other emerging technologies."