The City of Johannesburg is committed to reducing its carbon emissions and actively creating a better, more sustainable environment. The City is harvesting gas from landfill sites to produce electricity. This project reduces methane gas emissions that damage air quality. At present, the city confronts the following problems:
- Electricity is generated from (non-renewable) coal-fired power stations
- The city’s waste to landfill cycle follows a traditional route and process familiar to many cities, in which organic waste is compacted, which in turn depletes energy, emits dangerous methane gas into the atmosphere and contributes to global warming
- Methane gas is traditionally disposed of through burning, which releases the gases into the atmosphere in a safer form, although this is not an ideal practice
- The energy present in the gas – which is a renewable energy resource – is wasted.
In response to these challenges, and recognising that waste and energy are closely related, the City of Johannesburg has initiated a project to harvest gas from landfill sites to produce electricity. This project reduces methane gas emissions that cause poor air quality.