What is Waste To Energy?

Apr 3, 2024 | Sustainability

Ecologically sound waste management is crucial for preserving our environment. Logistics Recycling, Inc. (LRI) contributes to this effort through a process called Waste to Energy.


What is Waste To Energy?

Waste to Energy (WTE) is a process of generating energy in the form of electricity or heat from treating municipal solid waste. The energy produced can power homes, businesses, and industries.


How Does It Work?

Consolidating non-hazardous materials with energy-rich municipal waste, like wood or paper, converts non-liquid waste to energy. This closed-loop process heats water, creating steam in a boiler, then turns the turbines to produce electricity.

Filters capture nasty particles, such as carbon monoxide and nitrous oxide, during the burning process. Better yet, methane, a typical greenhouse gas released when materials typically break down in a landfill, is now eliminated.

The remaining metal is recycled, and the WTE facility sends the ash to either a concrete manufacturing plant or a local landfill.


What are the Benefits?

WTE offers several benefits:

  • Waste Reduction – This process reduces the materials to 5% of the original composition, reducing the amount of waste sent to the landfill and reducing the need for additional land for new landfills.
  • Energy Generation – The electricity and heat from this process power homes and businesses, reducing reliance on fossil fuels and lowering greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Resource Recovery – It allows for the recovery of valuable materials from waste streams, like metals, which are then recycled.
  • Economic Benefits – This creates jobs in the waste management and energy sectors and provides a source of revenue by selling the electricity back to the power grid.
  • Environmental Benefits—WTE facilities adhere to strict environmental regulations to minimize the emissions associated with this process, making it a cleaner alternative to traditional waste disposal methods.


How Does LRI Use Waste to Energy?

LRI will consolidate some of the non-hazardous materials we collect and truckload them to two nearby Midwest WTE plants. In the winter, the steam from these materials’ burning process helps heat neighboring businesses.

LRI is committed to preserving the environment by converting waste into energy. As a result, treating waste through this process protects our groundwater and air quality.

“There are lots of things that shouldn’t be thrown away because they become dangerous to our fish and wildlife as they break down.” Says Bryant Sears, Chief Operating Officer of LRI.

Sears continues, “As landfills continue to reach their limit, finding a better way to reduce the volume of your waste is key.”

Learn more about LRI’s sustainability initiatives and commitment.