Alternative Energy at Superfund Sites
Renewable energy resources – wind, solar, biomass and geothermal energy – are non-polluting, inexhaustible and increasingly cost-competitive. Alternative energy resources include renewable energy production as well as other energy sources, such as converting methane gas produced during natural decomposition of wastes into an electricity source. Superfund sites can be well suited for alternative energy production. Sites in urban and rural areas near utilities and transportation networks help keep development costs low.
Alternative energy resources can help communities create jobs and diversify local economies. They also are an important part of America’s energy security and environmental sustainability. Nationwide, there are at least 75 Superfund sites in planned or actual alternative energy reuse; several of these sites are also using renewable energy technologies as part of green remediation strategies for site cleanups. SRI can help communities reclaim and reuse contaminated lands for a wide range of purposes, including alternative and renewable energy.
On this page:
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- Renewable and Alternative Energy at Superfund Sites: Harnessing New Sources of Power (PDF)(16 pp, 5.2 MB)
- Reuse Opportunities at Capped Superfund Sites (PDF)(28 pp, 5.1 MB)
SRI has supported feasibility studies and assessments to determine the potential for alternative energy reuse. A few example reports are listed below:
- Hudson River PCBs Superfund Site: Energy Park/Longe/NYSCC Dewatering Facility Site Town of Fort Edward, New York Adaptive Reuse Analysis Final Report (PDF)(41 pp, 2.7 MB)
- Preliminary Assessment of Renewable Energy Opportunities - Naval Weapons Industrial Reserve Plant (PDF)(18 pp, 10.5 MB)
- Preliminary Assessment of Renewable Energy Opportunities Somersworth Landfill, Somersworth, New Hampshire (PDF)(16 pp, 1.3 MB)
- Renewable Energy Assessment Prairie View Landfill - Will County, IL (PDF)(4 pp, 10.9 MB)
- Renewable Energy Reuse Assessments EPA Region 5 Superfund Redevelopment Initiative (PDF)(4 pp, 6.8 MB)
- Report On Evaluating Renewable Energy Opportunities: The Apache Powder Superfund Site, Benson, Arizona (PDF)(14 pp, 9.5 MB)
Learn more about alternative energy projects highlighted in SRI’s in-depth case studies:
- Brick Township Goes Solar: Redevelopment of A Superfund Site for The Brick Township Landfill Site (PDF)(14 pp, 6.2 MB)
- Energizing A New Future Alternative Energy and Recreational Reuse at The H.O.D. Landfill Superfund Site in Northern Illinois (PDF)(16 pp, 1.2 MB)
- Green Remediation and Utility-Scale Solar Development: The Aerojet General Corporation Superfund Site and Sacramento County, California (PDF)(14 pp, 3.5 MB)
- Reclaim, Restore, Reinvent: Creating Jobs and Cleaner Energy, The Martin-Marietta, Sodyeco, Inc. Site in Charlotte, North Carolina (PDF)(16 pp, 6 MB)
- Utility-Scale Solar Energy Development: The Reilly Tar & Chemical Corp. (Indianapolis Plant) Site in Indianapolis, Indiana (PDF)(14 pp, 6 MB)
- Utility-Scale Solar Energy Development: The Sullivan’s Ledge Superfund Site in New Bedford, Massachusetts (PDF)(14 pp, 3.6 MB)
Alternative Energy Reuse Examples
Gallup's Quarry, Plainfield, CT
Martin-Marietta, Sodyeco, Inc., Charlotte, NC
Savannah River Site (USDOE), Aiken, South Carolina
Arsenic Trioxide Site, Ransom, Richland and Sargent Counties, ND
Lawrence Aviation Industries, Inc., Port Jefferson Station, NY
Methane Gas to Energy Sites
Central Landfill, Johnston, RI
Lowry Landfill, Aurora, CO
Omega Hills North Landfill, Germantown, WI
Pine Bend Sanitary Landfill. Grove Heights, MN
Southside Sanitary Landfill, Indianapolis, IN
Aerojet General, Rancho Cordova, CA
American Cyanamid, Bridgewater, NJ
Apache Powder, Saint David, AZ
Barkhamsted-New Hartford Landfill, Barkhamsted, CT
Bethlehem Steel (non NPL), Lackawanna, NY
Brick Township Landfill, Brick Township, NJ
Brookhaven National Laboratory (USDOE), Upton, NY
Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base, San Diego, CA
Charles George Reclamation Trust Landfill, Tyngsborough, MA
Chevron Questa Mine, Questa, NM
Continental Steel Corp., Kokomo, IN
Davisville Naval Construction Battalion Center, North Kingstowne, RI
Delilah Road, Egg Harbor Township, NJ
E.I. DuPont De Nemours & Co., Inc. (Newport Pigment Plant Landfill), Newport, DE
Elizabeth Mine, Strafford/Thatford, VT
Ellsworth Air Force Base, Ellsworth AFB, SD
FMC Corp. (Fridley Plant), Fridley, MN
Fort Detrick Area B Ground Water, Fort Detrick, MD
Fort Dix (Landfill Site), Pemberton Township, NJ
Frontier Fertilizer, Davis, CA
GE-Housatonic River, Pittsfield, MA
Groveland Wells, Groveland, MA
Iron Horse Park, Billerica, MA
Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA), Pasadena, CA
Landfill & Development Co., Mount Holly, NJ
Lawrence Livermore Natl Lab, Main Site (USDOE) , Livermore, CA
National Semiconductor Corp., Santa Clara, CA
Newmark Ground Water Contamination, San Bernardino, CA
North Carolina State University (Lot 86, Farm Unit #1), Raleigh, NC
Oak Ridge Reservation (USDOE), Oak Ridge, TN
Palmerton Zinc Pile, Palmerton, PA
Pemaco Maywood, Maywood, CA
Peterson/Puritan, Inc., Lincoln/Cumberland, RI
Picatinny Arsenal (USARMY), Rockaway Township, NJ
Refuse Hideaway, Middleton, WI
Reilly Tar & Chemical Corp. (Indianapolis Plant), Indianapolis, IN
Re-Solve, Inc., Dartmouth, MA
Rose Hill Regional Landfill, Wakefield, RI
Solvents Recovery Service of New England, Southington, CT
South Brunswick Landfill, South Brunswick, NJ
Sullivan's Ledge, New Bedford, MA
Tucson International Airport Area, Tucson, AZ
United Chrome Products, Corvallis, OR
W.R. Grace & Co., Inc. (Acton Plant), Acton, MA
Washington County Landfill, Lake Elmo, WI
West Kingston Town Dump/URI Disposal Area, South Kingstown, RI
York County Solid Waste and Refuse Authority Landfill, Stewartstown, PA
Bethlehem Steel (non NPL), Lackawanna, NY
Continental Steel Corp., Kokomo, IN
F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Cheyenne, WY
Nebraska Ordnance Plant (Former), Mead, NE
Otis Air National Guard Base/Camp Edwards, Falmouth, MA
Pantex Plant (USDOE), Pantex Village, TX
For additional information about alternative energy projects on potentially contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites, please visit RE-Powering America’s Land.
- Biomass, Geothermal, Solar and Wind Programs: These U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) programs offer general information, research, funding and technical assistance.
- Clean Energy Programs: These EPA programs provide information and technical assistance on clean energy technologies, green power resources and state and local programs.
- Green Power and Renewable Energy: This EPA effort provides information on green power and renewable energy.
- Innovative Redevelopment at Superfund Sites: Supporting Healthy, Sustainable and Equitable Communities (PDF)(10 pp, 6.9 MB): This fact sheet series highlights innovative projects at Superfund sites that are supporting healthy, sustainable and equitable communities.
- Landfill Methane Outreach Program: EPA’s Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP) is a voluntary assistance program that helps to reduce methane emissions from landfills by encouraging the recovery and beneficial use of landfill gas (LFG) as an energy resource. For more information see EPA's 2011 Superfund Landfill Methane-to-Energy Pilot Project (PDF) (143 pp, 7.5 MB).
- Renewable Energy at Mining Sites: EPA’s Abandoned Mine Lands Team (AMLT) has actively provided communities with technical support and resources to explore innovative reuse opportunities available at former mine lands.
- Renewable Energy Program: This EPA and DOE program provides links to state-level renewable energy incentive sheets and maps highlighting contaminated lands with the potential capacity to support renewable energy-related land uses.
- RE-Powering America’s Lands Initiative: This federal initiative identifies the renewable energy potential of formerly contaminated areas, including Superfund sites, and provides other useful resources for communities, developers, industry, state and local governments, and others interested in reusing these sites for renewable energy development.
- State and Local Climate and Energy Program: This program provides resources to state and local government on renewable energy topics.
- Technology Innovation and Field Services Division (TIFSD) Green Remediation Focus: TIFSD’s CLU-IN website provides information and case studies on EPA’s green remediation efforts.