On the recommendation of its Industrial Revenue Bond Committee, Sussex County Council unanimously approved a low-interest solid waste revenue bond of up to $ 60 million for Bioenergy Devco and its powerhouse project. bioenergy innovation, a poultry plant waste recycling facility south of Seaford.
At the April 27 council meeting, Sussex County Finance Director Gina Jennings said Bioenergy Devco would pay all county costs, including attorney fees, associated with issuing the obligation. In addition, the company will pay the county half of 1% of the total amount of the bond used, which could reach $ 300,000.
Jennings said the county was a channel through the bond market for investment projects to gain tax-exempt status, which the county has done in the past for The Moorings in Lewes, Perdue. Agricycle and NRG.
Bioenergy Devco, based in Annapolis, Md., Has filed a conditional use application to amend four other conditional use permits issued over the past three decades for the Waste Processing Plant Waste Conversion Project. poultry, known as DAF, into natural gas and compost using an anaerobic digester process at its composting facility south of Seaford off Highway 13A.
Council approved the request at its April 20 meeting. After county approval, the application will be reviewed by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, which approves and monitors the permits.
Natural gas and compost produced
The company purchased the existing composting plant in February 2020 for $ 15 million from Perdue Farms and entered into a 20-year contract with Perdue to recycle poultry processing plant waste, or DAF, from four facilities by an anaerobic process.
DAF, dissolved air flotation, is the liquefied end product of wastewater treatment in poultry processing plants. A permit from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Control would recycle up to 220,000 tonnes of DAF per year at the plant.
In the anaerobic process, the poultry waste in the digesters is heated and constantly mixed for about 30 days. Microorganisms break down the material called digestate. A centrifuge will remove excess water from the digestate, with the remaining solid material being transferred to the composting facility. There it would be treated with wood waste to make organic compost.
Microorganisms release biogas, which is a mixture of methane, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and traces of hydrogen sulfide and ammonia. The gas will be captured and cleaned as part of the installation process.
Chesapeake Utilities will take the biogas off-site, clean it into renewable natural gas, and inject it into the company’s pipeline.
The Sussex County facility will be the company’s first in Delaware and its fourth project in the United States since its alliance with Italy-based BTS Biogas to enter the U.S. market.
The group urges Carney to stop the project
In response to the vote, Food & Water Watch Delaware organizer Greg Layton released the following statement:
“Today’s vote confirms one of our worst suspicions – that taxpayers will subsidize the cost of this polluting facility, all to ensure venture capitalists an immediate profit. The hundreds of residents who have expressed public opposition to the biogas program should have been factored into the decision to issue the tax-exempt bonds, of which supply is limited, to fund the very project they opposed. . Governor John Carney must stop this project in its tracks and order the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control to deny Bioenergy Devco its pollution permits.
For more information
Questions about the project can be submitted through the company’s website at bit.ly/bicadproject, which also has several educational resources for download.
Residents and local organizations are welcome to tour the facility for a tour and a more in-depth look at anaerobic digestion. On Saturday 8 May, the establishment will host an open day of the International Composting Week. The public is invited.