Monday, December 12, 2005

Atlantic City Rolls the Dice on a Renewable Wastewater Plant

After living in Las Vegas for just over six years, I have a hard time equating gambling meccas with sustainability. Still, Vegas is making some efforts, and now Atlantic City is getting in on the game. From an Earthtoys press release:
Atlantic County's wastewater treatment plant will be the first in the United States to be powered by a system that combines solar energy arrays with a wind farm. By capturing energy from the sun and the Atlantic Coast winds, rather than burning fossil fuels, the hybrid solar-wind power plant will produce enough energy to power the equivalent of approximately 3800 homes and displace the need for an estimated 24,000 barrels of oil per year.

The new power plant, to be dedicated December 12th by the Atlantic County Utilities Authority (ACUA), is also one of the largest hybrid solar-wind power plants in the world. The 8 megawatt (MW) hybrid solar-wind power plant will generate an estimated 40,800,000 kilowatt hours of clean electricity annually.
Of course, gambling meccas also like things big, so it's no surprise that they wouldn't settle for anything less than "one of the largest..." I'm encouraged to see that much of the funding for this project comes from rebates and low-interest loans from the state of New Jersey, demonstrating that public support for renewable development can really get the ball rolling.

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