Three San Joaquin Valley recycling businesses and five other state firms will share $19.5 million in newly established greenhouse gas reduction (GHG) grants, according to an announcement from the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) on Wednesday, November 18, 2014. The monies will be used to construct or expand new and existing facilities, and to upgrade equipment to allow the processing of more recycled materials.
California’s Budget Act of 2014 authorized CalRecycle to issue the grants, which use proceeds from the state’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, for projects resulting in reduced GHG emissions. Those projects also will help California reach its statewide goal of 75 percent recycling, composting, and source reduction by 2020. The fund is part of California’s Cap-and-Trade program, administered by the California Air Resources Board (ARB). CalRecycle worked closely with ARB in determining who would get the grants. The grants were issued under two different funding programs. CalRecycle’s Organics Grant Program and CalRecycle’s Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass Grant Program.
The eight firms chosen were selected from a competition with 71 total applicants. In order to qualify for one of the grants, each applicant had to show that the money would be used for new or expanded infrastructure projects, calculate greenhouse gas reductions, reduce landfill disposal, and prepare a work plan that would result in quick action. Preferences were given to projects that benefit disadvantaged communities as designated by the California Environmental Protection Agency. Five of the eight projects will be physically located in disadvantaged communities.
The Valley firms and their projects, as described in the press release, are:
Colony Energy Partners, LLC (Tulare and Fresno) will receive $2.9 million to build a high-solids anaerobic co-digestion facility that will divert more than 110,000 tons of waste from landfills each year. The organics will be converted into natural gas for injection into the natural gas grid and distributed through an on-site fueling station for use as a transportation fuel. As part of the waste diversion activities, Fresno Metro Ministry will expand the Fresno Food Recovery Network and divert an additional 65 tons of food per year from landfills and provide it to those in need. The project is expected to create approximately 10 temporary jobs and eight permanent jobs.
Mid Valley Disposal, Inc. (Kerman) will receive $3 million for a new covered, aerated, static-pile composting operation at its materials recovery facility and transfer station, diverting an additional 42,100 tons of material from landfills each year. The project is expected to provide up to 36 temporary construction jobs and four permanent jobs.
Peninsula Plastics Recycling, Inc. (Turlock) will receive $1 million for equipment that will enable it to recover approximately 45 percent of its current recycling process by-product and recycle it into landscaping material. This project is expected to create approximately nine new jobs.
“These projects will directly reduce greenhouse gas emissions by keeping material out of landfills through composting, recycling, and waste prevention,” CalRecycle Director Caroll Mortensen said. “By providing financial incentives for capital investment, we can expand the infrastructure needed to divert more material to secondary uses, which will help create jobs and strengthen our ability to manage materials to their highest and best uses.”