Waste-to-Energy Technology Due Diligence
Since 2014, one of America's largest private companies has retained Harbin Engineering, P.C. to perform proprietary due-diligence reviews on several waste-to-fuels, waste-to-energy technologies. One of the technologies has been in operation for over twenty years in Europe; another one is in the process of scaling up its pilot model in the United States. We provided personal expertise, analysis and consulting that has energized the curiosity and satisfied the timely demands of the multi-billion dollar company. We are proud to have a reputation for maintaining a respected level of confidentiality, professionalism, responsiveness and careful consideration addressing future decisions and goals of this client. The projects completed for our client demonstrate our ability to apply our knowledge and understanding of the solid waste industry and assist private corporations in making valuable decisions that minimize risk, manage costs and maintain compliance.
Waste Excavation and Reclamation
At the recommendation of Harbin Engineering, P.C. in 2007, the City of Barnesville selected the major form of corrective action to remove by mining all wastes from the closed Goggins Road Landfill. The purpose of this activity was to remove all wastes from the closed landfill thereby eliminating it as a source of contamination to the groundwater and reclaiming the property for future use or sale by the City. In 2012, Georgia EPD approved the Waste Excavation & Reclamation Plan (WERP) we prepared. Between April 2014 and October 2015, the City removed all the waste from the 6-acre landfill for disposal offsite at the Cedar Grove Landfill, seven miles away. Final grading and cover was installed by August 2015. As a part of the WERP, the City utilized a trommel screen to separate the waste fraction from the soil fraction, which allowed the soils to remain onsite and thus significantly reduce the haul and disposal cost. As a part of the WERP, the City tested the soils underlying the waste and also in the screened fraction. Results from these tests indicate the soils remaining onsite meet Georgia's clean-up criteria suitable for residential properties. We anticipate remediation in the groundwater as a result of this excavation, thereby minimizing costs associated with post-closure care. Because the waste is now removed from this property, the Goggins Road Landfill has the potential to become one of the first landfills in Georgia to be removed from post-closure-care and Georgia's Hazardous Site Inventory (HSI) program. The projects completed for the City of Barnesville demonstrate our expertise in permitting innovative environmental solutions and our ability to satisfy requirements from multiple regulatory programs.
Waste-to-Fuels Facility Permitting at Cedar Grove Landfill
In 2015, Harbin Engineering, P.C. assisted the Lamar County Regional Solid Waste Management Authority with receiving one of the first permits in Georgia for a waste-to-fuels/energy facility. A project of this scope demonstrates our expertise to manage a complex permitting process and our willingness to utilize our knowledge to design for innovative technologies at solid waste facilities .
Closure Construction at Newton County Lower River Road Landfill
Harbin Engineering prepared a corrective action plan in response to the remediation of a leachate spill and presidential declaration of emergency that included repair of the landfill slopes and mitigation to prevent future damage. The hazard mitigation project proposed to prevent future damage to landfill slopes was the installation of ClosureTurf.
As a hazard mitigation project, FEMA/GEMA will reimburse 85% of the project costs. Harbin included the remainder of the project cost in the GEFA Georgia Fund application to minimize the impact to the cash balance.
ClosureTurf is a three component system of geomembrane, engineered turf and sand infill for ballast. A benefit of ClosureTurf is that it reduces future landfill management related to the establishment, maintenance and upkeep of a vegetative cover. Another benefit of ClosureTurf is the reduction of soil cover required to cover the waste. More waste volume may be disposed in the facility when less soil cover is required. Additionally, a non-penetrating, solar panel option is available for future revenues or offsetting costs.
In the early stages of this project, Harbin Engineering prepared a minor modification to change the sequence of fill at the site. The change of sequence allowed the operators to realize additional volume in Phases 1 and 2 by filling the storm water terraces to create a constant slope for closure with ClosureTurf. This modification was approved by EPD in 2016. The filling of Phases 1 and 2 continued until May 2019.
The closure area of Phases 1 and 2 were surveyed in June 2019. Harbin prepared the construction and bidding documents for the project including the proposed closure with ClosureTurf, waste relocation, landfill gas system modifications, drainage and roadway improvements and a landfill gas flare. Harbin also prepared the minor modification to the facility’s permit for the alternate ClosureTurf final cover system and its associated construction quality assurance plan.
BLE assisted Harbin Engineering by providing a veneer stability analysis of the ClosureTurf system and a slope stability analysis on the 3:1 slopes.
An erosion, sedimentation and pollution control plan was prepared for this project. The plan includes the installation and maintenance of onsite best management practices. EPD considers the closure project as industrial activities related to the landfill; therefore, storm water discharge is covered under the facility’s NPDES Industrial General Permit, GAR 050000.
Harbin finalized the construction and bidding documents and issued them for bid. Bids were received in January 2020 and construction began in April 2020. A unique aspect of this project is the coordination of a construction contract and a material only contract with the supplier of the ClosureTurf. The Authority eliminates the contractor markup and reduces the actual costs of the project by purchasing the product directly from the manufacturer.
Harbin continues to provide contract and construction administration for the project.