A Greener Future: York Centre’s facility now transforms Green Bin organic waste into renewable natural gas

Toronto, ON – Councillor James Pasternak (Ward 6 – York Centre), Vice-Chair of City’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee, is pleased to announce that York Centre’s very own Dufferin Organics Processing Facility is now producing renewable gas (RNG) from Green Bin organic waste and injecting it into the natural gas grid.

Councillor James Pasternak, York Centre – Downsview, Ward 6, City of Toronto at the Dufferin Solid Waste Management Facility.

The announcement took place today at the Dufferin Solid Waste Management Facility, led by Mayor John Tory, and also included Councillor Jennifer McKelvie (Ward 25 Scarborough-Rouge Park), Chair of the City’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee and Cynthia Hansen, Executive Vice President & President, Gas Distribution & Storage, Enbridge Gas Inc.

As part of its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, drive economic efficiencies and improve social outcomes, the City has been exploring how it can harness the green energy potential of the biogas and landfill gas produced at its solid waste management sites. Working with Enbridge Gas Inc., the City has installed a biogas upgrading facility at the Dufferin Solid Waste Management Services site. The new infrastructure allows the City to take the raw biogas produced from processing Green Bin organics, turn it into RNG and inject it into the natural gas grid for use by the City.

Pictured (From right to left): Councillor James Pasternak, York Centre, with Mayor John Tory, Cynthia Hansen, Executive Vice President & President, Gas Distribution & Storage, Enbridge Gas Inc., and Councillor Jennifer McKelvie (Ward 25 Scarborough-Rouge Park).

After City Council approved Citywide Greenhouse Gas Reduction Strategy last year, the RNG produced at this facility will be blended with the natural gas that the City buys to create a low-carbon fuel blend that will be used across the organization to power vehicles and heat City-owned facilities, allowing for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions citywide.

The production of RNG from biogas has the environmental benefit of closing the carbon loop by capturing the biogas produced (instead of flaring/burning it off), upgrading the biogas to RNG pipeline quality, and then using it to displace a fossil fuel with a renewable green fuel.

The Dufferin RNG facility is expected to produce 3.3 million cubic metres of RNG each year. This will result in a fuel blend that is approximately 7 per cent RNG. By capturing the biogas instead of flaring/burning it off, the facility will also avoid more than 9,000 tonnes of carbon being released into the atmosphere annually. The City will not start using the gas until the beginning of 2022, to ensure production capacity has stabilized. Until then, the gas will be stored in the grid.

This project is one of the first of its kind in North America and supports the City’s TransformTO Climate Action Strategy, Net Zero Carbon Plan for City Buildings, Long Term Waste Management Strategy and goal of becoming Ontario’s first city with a circular economy.

The City has also identified potential biogas/landfill gas upgrading opportunities at several other City waste facilities including the Disco Road Solid Waste Management Facility, Green Lane Landfill and Keele Valley Landfill. All of the sites combined have the potential to produce enough gas to fuel the City’s entire natural gas needs annually (excluding City Agency, Boards and Commissions). The next facility to receive RNG infrastructure will be the Disco Road Solid Waste Management Facility, with plans to have the site up and running by the end of 2023.

“This facility is an important investment in green infrastructure. We are thrilled to have green molecules of RNG being produced in Ward 6 – York Centre and our very own Dufferin Organics Processing Facility taking lead in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.” 

– Councillor James Pasternak (Ward 6 York Centre).

Councillor James Pasternak is a Councillor in the City of Toronto, representing Ward 6 – York Centre, including the Downsview community. He sits on the Mayor’s Executive Committee, is Chair of the North York Community Council, and Vice Chair of the Infrastructure and Environment Committee. York Centre is one of the 25 wards in the City of Toronto and is home to more than 110,000 people whose diversity and experiences make Toronto, Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. For more information, visit www.JamesPasternak.ca or Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Media contact: Councillor James Pasternak | 416-392-1371 | councillor_pasternak@toronto.ca

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