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Landfill Methane Outreach Program

Project Profile

Kimberly-Clark LFG Energy Project

Location:
Beech Island, South Carolina
End User(s):
Kimberly-Clark Beech Island Facility
Sector(s):
Consumer products
Landfill(s):
Three Rivers Regional Subtitle D Landfill
Landfill Size:
2.89 million tons waste-in-place (2009)
Project Type:
Boiler
Project Size:
1,100 standard cubic feet per minute (scfm)
Savings:
$800,000 per year
Environmental Benefits:
Carbon sequestered annually by 3,000 acres of pine or fir forests, annual greenhouse gas emissions from 2,700 passenger vehicles, or carbon dioxide emissions from more than 33,000 barrels of oil consumed. Annual energy savings equate to heating 3,900 homes. Estimated emissions reductions of 0.0039 million metric tons of carbon equivalents.
LMOP Partners Involved:
CPL Systems Inc., HDR Engineering, Inc., Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Siemens, Three Rivers Solid Waste Authority
Last Updated:
7/30/2010

Graph illustrating the wide variability of natural gas prices from 1990 to 2010, with projections through 2022.

In Beech Island, South Carolina, landfill gas (LFG) fuels part of Kimberly-Clark's largest manufacturing facility in North America, where the consumer products company makes diapers, bathroom tissue, and facial tissue. The LFG energy project offsets natural gas that Kimberly-Clark would otherwise purchase.

With the pending requirement to install a gas collection and control system, the Three Rivers Solid Waste Authority (TRSWA) investigated a number of options for beneficially utilizing LFG from its growing landfill located outside of Aiken. After considering direct use, electrical generation, compressed natural gas, and high Btu, they selected direct use at the Kimberly-Clark plant, which is nearly 16 miles away. To justify the cost of such a lengthy pipeline, TRSWA completed extensive analyses, including analyses of methane generation, collection efficiency, natural gas prices, and regulatory requirements.

A key component for both TRSWA and Kimberly-Clark was minimizing risk associated with the price for the LFG, which they tied to the New York Mercantile (NYMEX) natural gas futures prices. For protection from wide fluctuations in price, both companies agreed to both a floor and ceiling price. When prices are between the floor and ceiling, Kimberly-Clark pays TRSWA a set percentage of the cost of natural gas.

This project is a fine example of a public-private partnership that is a winner for all involved. It will help our citizens with jobs creation and retention, save money for our government and for Kimberly Clark, and will help keep the air clean and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. —Ronnie Young, Aiken City Council member

Kimberly-Clark also powers its headquarters in Dallas and part of its manufacturing plant in Paris, Texas with electricity created from LFG.

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