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Article 56
Sunday's Internet Edition, February 14, 2010.
County to turn garbage into energy
Thomasville Times
Karissa Minn: Staff Writer

The county will soon be making money from residents’ old garbage.

The Davidson County Board of Commissioners voted Tuesday to approve most of a contract with a company that would extract methane gas from the county landfill to generate electricity. The company plans to sell the energy and return part of the profits to the county.

“Revenues would average $200,000 per year under the life of the contract, assuming the carbon credit
market remains strong,” said Purchasing Director Dwayne Childress.

DTE Biomass, operating under Davidson Gas Producers LLC, will begin making quarterly payments to the county next year. They will be responsible for setting up and running the extraction equipment.

The current landfill site includes 34.4 acres, which will be full in the spring, said Landfill Director Charles Brushwood. About two years ago, 15 acres were completely closed, and the landfill is working on another site to use once the rest closes. Brushwood said that there are 15 wells currently on the property for methane.

Commissioners withheld approval of one clause of the contract related to liability insurance, so they could examine it at a later time.

In other news, the board approved a preliminary agreement to give the Town of Midway 50,000 gallons a day of sewer capacity. Utility Systems Administrator Laura Vanhoy said that Davidson County has already allocated 1.5 million gallons per day in an agreement with Winston-Salem and Forsyth County utilities, and 430,000 gallons per day still are available.

County Manager Robert Hyatt said the county has been talking to Midway for almost a year about bringing sewer service to the town. Midway is interested in aiding commercial development, he said, with a sewer that would run to downtown shopping centers and to the intersection of Hickory Tree Road and Old U.S. Highway 52.

“Anything that we can do to help any part of this county grow is a benefit for us,” Commissioner Sam Watford said.

Commissioners also awarded contracts to two engineering companies to design sewer extensions to two
Lexington schools. Davis Martin Powell & Associates was awarded $166,000 for the Extended Day School project, and the Wooten Company was awarded $123,000 for the Churchland Elementary School project.

The board will hold its next informational meeting at 8 a.m. on Nov. 6 at the Davidson County Governmental Center.

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