In 2012, a landfill gas capture system was installed and implemented at the Athens-Clarke County Landfill to use the already-produced natural gases as energy. Landfills naturally emit methane as materials decompose. However, systems like these capture the gas that is otherwise released into the ground and air and instead harness the gas and convert it into energy that goes directly into the Athens-Clarke County power grid. The system is one of the biggest renewable energy sources, and the energy collected is a direct supplement to Athens-Clark County's energy grid.
Besides being a top renewable energy source, this system has the added benefit of decreased greenhouse gases. Approximately 75% of the methane that runs through the landfill is burned and converted instead to CO2, which is then burned and converted to energy. Therefore, the CO2 emissions are used as an energy source rather than being released into the atmosphere.
Methane levels in groundwater are also reduced, resulting in cleaner water and air for our community.