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Toyota Will Use Garbage-Produced Electricity at Its Georgetown Plant

Toyota’s Georgetown, Kentucky, manufacturing plant will be the first to generate electricity from methane, a byproduct of trash decomposition at the nearby Central Kentucky Landfill. The premiere is part of the company’s plan to virtually eliminate CO2 emissions from its factories and vehicles by 2050.
Using methane produced as a byproduct of trash decomposition is one way Toyota wants to become greener 1 photo
Toyota made a big entrance on U.S. soil with its hydrogen fuel cell Mirai last month, as it managed to have Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd unveil it themselves. The company is now going back to the future once again with its next step towards cutting as much as possible from its CO2 emissions.

“We will generate one megawatt (1 million watts) per hour at the site,” said Toyota’s environmental strategies manager Dave Absher. “That’s enough annual energy generation to produce approximately 10,000 vehicles. The system can eventually be scaled up to 10 megawatts per hour.”

Sounds pretty challenging, but believe it or not, it’s real. As mentioned above, the Japanese automaker has recently presented its plans to largely eliminate CO2 emissions from its vehicles and manufacturing plants by 2050, and the launch of the Mirai in the U.S. is just one of the steps it's taking towards this goal.

Making its fuel cell patents available to other auto manufacturers - in a similar way Tesla Motors did with its EV construction - and developing manufacturing technologies that use hydrogen as a power source are also part of the plan. Toyota is not stopping here, though, as it has also announced it has plans to rely on alternative energy sources such as wind, solar, and locally produced renewable energy as well.

The project started five years ago and is the result of a collaboration between Toyota’s Georgetown manufacturing plant and Central Kentucky Landfill owned by Waste Services of the Bluegrass. According to the Japanese carmaker, landfills are required to monitor methane levels and report these levels to the EPA. Capturing and burning the methane has been determined by the Agency to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


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