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(Monday, Dec. 21, 2009) – Mayor Mufi Hannemann today broke ground on the H-POWER Expansion Project, which will add a third boiler to the City-owned waste-to-energy facility and greatly increase the amount of garbage it can combust.  The project will also allow the plant to generate much more electricity.

      “We are firmly committed to reducing the amount of waste that ends up in our landfill, and this is a major step forward in that continuing effort,” Hannemann said.  “This expansion has been badly needed for years, and I am very pleased to see such an important project reaching fruition.  By greatly improving our island’s sustainability, this project will be a tremendous help to us all.”

      The H-POWER facility currently utilizes two refuse-derived fuel boilers capable of processing a combined 2,160 tons-per-day of non-hazardous municipal solid waste, while generating up to 57 megawatts of energy.  This translates into 4.5 percent of Oahu’s electricity, enough to power 45,000 homes.

      The third boiler will utilize mass-burn technology and be able to combust an additional 900 tons per day, yielding an additional 25-30 megawatts of electricity – enough to supply 25,000 more homes – and supplying a cumulative total of 6 percent of Oahu’s electricity. 

      The facility, located in Campbell Industrial Park, is the cornerstone of the City’s Solid Waste Management System, and combusts nearly 60 percent of the 1.8 million tons of garbage generated on Oahu annually.

      The facility’s combustion process reduces the volume of waste used for fuel by 90 percent, burning it at 1800 degrees Fahrenheit and reducing it to an inert ash. The City will also install a shredder that will break down bulky items—which the original two boilers cannot process—to fuel the new boiler.

      H-POWER, or Honolulu Program Of Waste Energy Recovery, commenced operations in May 1990 and has been operated by Covanta since its inception.

      “Covanta has provided exemplary service to the City since the beginning,” Hannemann said. “Their staff’s dedication and strong management skills have helped make H-POWER a major success, and we’re very confident that adding this third boiler will be a major success for everyone.”

      The City built the H-POWER plant to reduce Oahu’s dependency on landfills. Since 1990, it has combusted more than 12 million tons of waste, offset 12 million barrels of imported oil that would have been burned to generate electricity, and prevented the emission of 12 million tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

      The expansion project will cost approximately $302 million and is expected to be completed in late 2011 or early 2012.  The construction will create 300 jobs and produce 34 new fulltime employees upon completion.






Contact:  Markus Owens, ENV Public Communications Officer, 768-3454