Advance Disposal & VVWRA Awarded Air District’s Highest Honor

2014-05-31 22.18.01

By Staff Reports

(Victorville) – A family-owned material recovery facility and the Victor Valley’s municipal wastewater treatment plant were recognized today by the Governing Board of the Mojave Desert Air Quality Management District, as the local regulatory agency presented its 2013/2014 Exemplar Awards to Advance Disposal Company and the Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority for implementing innovative, energy-saving projects which are revolutionizing the waste disposal process, while significantly reducing air pollution emissions.

Advance Disposal was recognized for recently doubling the size of its Hesperia Material Recovery Facility and replacing higher-emitting loading and conveyor equipment with state-of-the art, fuel efficient equipment, while working to meet the demands of the upcoming 75% state mandated landfill diversion rate, set to commence in 2020. As a result, the newly retooled MRF is now able to process the same amount of material

in half the time, with a 50% decrease in fuel emissions, since equipment such as loaders, excavators and skidsters previously required to transfer material during the additional processing time are no longer necessary. A tunnel system designed for trucks entering the MRF has helped further reduce fuel emissions and cut in half the time it takes to load landfill-bound idling transfer trucks by loading directly from the floor into the top of the haulers. Advance Disposal also recently added a CNG-fueled refuse truck to its fleet along with a propane-operated forklift. Advance Disposal’s Exemplar Award was accepted by Jakob Bath, MRF Operations Manager.

VVWRA was awarded the Exemplar for partnering with Anaergia Services LLC of Carlsbad to retrofit a decommissioned anaerobic digester for the purpose of tripling its sludge and waste co-digesting capacity, and using the resulting biogas as fuel to generate electricity and offset natural gas usage at its Victorville plant. As a result, two combined heat and power engines have been equipped with lean-burn technology and are now operating on digester biogas, supplemented by natural gas. The new engines have replaced two of four existing internal combustion engines, which has resulted in an overall reduction of the facility’s nitrogen oxide, volatile organic compound and greenhouse gas emissions. The two remaining combined heat and power engines will run on 100% biogas and be used for backup purposes only. VVWRA also modified its formerly high energy-use UV treatment system to run on a single channel, which has reduced emissions from this source by 60% and further decreased energy demand. The OmnivoreTM project – which was commissioned in January of 2014 – is a developing technology, and is the first of its kind in North America.

As a result of its introduction, VVWRA is currently producing 1.4 MW of electricity onsite and is expected to be 100% energy neutral by the start of 2015. Gilbert Perez, Director of Operations, accepted the Exemplar Award on behalf of VVWRA.

The Exemplar Awards recognize High Desert entities that demonstrate an exceptional commitment to clean air through the development of voluntary activities/projects that reduce or prevent air pollution within the MDAQMD’s jurisdiction, which encompasses San Bernardino County’s High Desert and Riverside County’s Palo Verde Valley. The Exemplar Awards are presented annually in association with National Pollution Prevention Week.

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