Burning trash powers cities, fuels debate

Capital News Service
LANSING—While some don’t consider burning trash as green, Michigan is exploring waste-to-fuel plants as an alternative energy source. The Senate Committee on Natural Resources recently heard testimony concerning waste-to-fuel facilities to determine if more of these plants could benefit Michigan, but some environmental advocates are not sure building these facilities is the best path to take. The committee heard testimony supporting waste-to-fuel from Ellie Booth, director of state and government relations for Covanta Energy Corporation, the largest owner and operator of waste-to-fuel facilities in the United States, Europe and China. Landfill space is finite and trash disposal is always an issue, Booth said. Booth’s company operates only one such plant in Michigan, the Covanta Kent Inc. waste-to-fuel facility, which is owned by Kent County and operated by Covanta.