BA Changing From Landfill To Waste-To-Energy Trash Disposal

Wednesday, October 19th 2016, 12:48 pm
By: News On 6

Beginning December 1st, Broken Arrow sanitation crews will take their trash to the Tulsa trash-to-energy plant instead of a landfill thanks to a new contract.

In a news release, the City of Broken Arrow says in addition to lower fees, the disposal of solid waste at the Covanta Tulsa Renewable Energy plant  is "environmentally friendly and is a responsible alternative to landfill disposal."

Broken Arrow says the change will generate a valuable renewable energy resulting in a "net reduction of greenhouse gas emissions when compared to conventional landfill practices."

“The average Broken Arrow household generates about 203 pounds of solid waste per month. When you add up all the households we service, that’s a lot of trash that was ending up in the landfill,” said General Services Director Lee Zirk. 

“We’re very excited about using a more sustainable method of waste disposal that will create renewable energy.”

According to Covanta, a single kitchen bag of trash has the potential to keep a compact fluorescent light bulb aglow for approximately four days. 

Broken Arrow’s Sanitation department provides trash pickup to more than 33,000 residential customers. 

The city says the estimated annual cost for Broken Arrow is $490,000, based on a projected 40,000 tons of refuse to be collected during the fiscal year 2017.

The Covanta Tulsa says its processes 1,125 tons-per-day of solid waste, generating up to 298,000 pounds per hour of steam. The steam is used to power a turbine generator that produces 16.8 megawatts of renewable energy that is sold to Public Service Company of Oklahoma. That steam is also sold to the Holly Frontier refinery in west Tulsa.

The trash to energy plant is located in the 2100 block of South Yukon Avenue.

The Broken Arrow says some items will not be accepted at the trash to energy plant.  As a result, trash crews will collect larger, bulkier items in a separate pickup.

Those items include:

  • Roofing, materials and/or wood from remodeling, privacy or other fencing
  • Bags of dirt, rocks or concrete
  • Large items such as: mattresses and/or box spring sets, hot water heaters, disassembled swing sets, furniture items, major appliances, carpet rolls, lawn mowers, lawn and yard equipment
  • Refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners (with proper documentation)
  • Large piles of yard waste or brush that is not or cannot be bundled

To schedule one these pickups customers will need to call Broken Arrow's Action Center at 918-258-3587.  The city says a standard pickup charge will apply.  

More information is available at the City of Broken Arrow's website.