Landfills are one of the worst emitters of greenhouse gasses and Entsorga West Virginia has come up with a solution that makes recycling a city’s trash easier, more efficient and better for the environment.
Entsorga West Virginia, located in Martinsburg, is an advanced resource recovery manufacturer that collects municipal solid waste, recycles unseparated consumer materials and converts what’s left behind into a clean, alternative fuel source. But this cutting-edge company does more than sort trash.
Entsorga is home to the nation’s first High Efficiency Biological Treatment facility (HEBioT™) and it’s helping save the planet.
What is a high efficiency biological treatment facility?
If you don’t know what a high efficiency biological treatment facility is, think of it as an advanced sorting and composting facility and refinery that takes municipal solid waste and other types of commercial and industrial wastes and turns them into a clean, solid recovered fuel. Using solid recovered fuels reduces the need to mine and transport fossil fuels throughout the United States, which helps preserve natural resources and decreases greenhouse gas emissions.
Entsorga Italia, the owner and licensor of this technology, was founded in 1997 by a group of entrepreneurs who developed a suite of innovative, efficient and environmentally sustainable technologies to improve waste management. In 2019, Entsorga West Virginia opened and the facility has been receiving waste since March 29, 2019 and producing solid recovered fuel since May 10, 2019.
Why is this technology important?
Recycling municipal waste is one of the best ways to reduce the amount of trash going to landfills, which emit major greenhouse gases and can pollute waterways. By diverting municipal solid waste to facilities like Entsorga West Virginia, waste is turned into a useable fuel and kept out of landfills, where it decomposes and produces methane. The company’s treatment process also is designed to recover PVC plastics, and ferrous and non-ferrous metals.
“We’re very proud of the fact that we achieved high landfill diversion rates at our Martinsburg facility in 2020, all while producing 11,211 tons of fuel,” said Vice President of Science Research and Development at BioHiTech Emily Dyson.
Entsorga’s integrated approach to waste management allows the company to localize operations and keep benefits in the Eastern Panhandle community.
“Waste is collected from commercial and industrial customers in the Tri-state area, as well as residents, and then produced into a high-quality alternative fuel at our facility to be used by other manufacturers in the area,” Dyson said.
What are the advantages?
Entsorga chose to do business in Martinsburg, West Virginia because of the location’s proximity to Washington D.C., which makes it easy for federal lawmakers, lobbyists and other interested parties to visit the company’s plant and learn more about its waste management technology.
Other advantages include West Virginia’s wealth of cement manufacturers and industries that can partner with Entsorga and utilize the company’s solid recovered fuel. Additionally, the recent passage of West Virginia Senate Bill 368 eliminated solid waste assessment fees for mixed waste processing and resource recovery facilities. This allows Entsorga to do business across the state without unassociated landfill fees and oversight by the state Public Service Commission.
Resources and guidance provided by the West Virginia Development Office have also helped Entsorga expand its market and connect with public and private organizations. The Martinsburg facility was also made possible by a land grant from the Berkley County Solid Waste Authority, which is being financed with $25 million in tax-exempt, private bonds issued by the West Virginia Economic Development Authority.