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GM investing $24M in electrical generation equipment to use more landfill gas at two plants

5 December 2013

General Motors is making a $24-million investment in electrical generation equipment that will allow the company to use more landfill gas at its Fort Wayne, Ind., and Orion, Mich., assembly plants.

The new equipment will generate more than 14 MW of electricity from landfill gas, helping GM avoid producing more than 89,000 metric tons of CO2 per year. That’s equivalent to the annual greenhouse gas emissions of 18,542 passenger vehicles. GM also will save a combined $10 million in energy costs each year at the facilities.

The investment will provide powerhouse construction at each assembly plant, as well as generation equipment and machinery.

We have made a public commitment to increase our use of renewable energy within GM to 125 megawatts by 2020. This expansion represents more than 10 percent of that goal.

—Rob Threlkeld, GM global manager of renewable energy

Orion Assembly has used landfill gas since 1999. Currently it helps heat a portion of an upgraded paint shop that uses half the energy per vehicle as the one it replaced. When the electric-generation project is completed, 54% of Orion’s energy will come from renewable landfill gas.

Fort Wayne Assembly has used landfill gas since 2002. The investment will increase its landfill gas use four-fold, to 40%. Earlier this year, Fort Wayne was named a US EPA Energy Star certified facility for its prudent energy management.

The excess gas flare that normally escapes into the air is now redirected into the facility to create electricity energy for manufacturing.

Construction on both projects has begun, and is expected to be complete and operational by May of 2014.

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It's great to see big business acting to use renewable energy.

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