Congress Chooses Waste-to-Energy

Capitol Hill will begin sending its trash to local waste-to-energy facilities that will turn trash into electricity, according to an announcement today by the Architect of the Capitol (AoC).  The chairman of the Committee on House Administration, Rep. Dan Lungren (R-Calif.), praised the AoC’s waste-to-energy initiative. “Waste-to-energy facilities, woefully underutilized here in the U.S., are an environmentally efficient, cost-effective means to reduce greenhouse emissions and divert waste from landfills” wrote Lungren in a statement Thursday.  Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla.) said in a statement, “Waste-to-energy is one of the steps we need to take to end our dependence on foreign energy sources and dictators like Hugo Chavez.”

The support for sending trash from the Capitol and House and Senate office buildings was bipartisan.  Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.), the ranking member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment, praised the news of the waste-to-energy program, saying "“It’s the appropriate thing to do, burning our waste and getting energy from it,” he said.  Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), who pays a carbon-offset provider to offset the greenhouse gas emissions related to his Washington and district offices, said, “I’m totally open to it [WTE], if it’s done right." 

Statement of Ted Michaels, President, Energy Recovery Council:

“The Energy Recovery Council applauds the decision of the Architect of the Capitol and the Committee on House Administration to send Congress’ non-recyclable waste to waste-to-energy facilities. By relying on waste-to-energy, Congress will save taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars, reduce the Capitol’s greenhouse gas emissions, increase the region’s supply of renewable energy and reduce dependence on landfilling. Waste-to-energy is recognized around the world as a renewable, low-emission power source and a sustainable waste management tool. It also provides thousands of well-paying, clean energy jobs that can’t be exported. It is extremely encouraging to see Congress stand behind this technology in a bipartisan way. Our industry looks forward to continuing to support local jobs while providing clean, affordable power for the region.”