Landfill Gas Destruction and Beneficial Use Projects

May 5, 2021

The American Carbon Registry (ACR), a nonprofit enterprise of Winrock International, has published Version 2.0 of its Methodology for the generation of carbon offsets from Landfill Gas Destruction and Beneficial Use Projects. The original version of the Methodology was developed by ACR with technical support from the US EPA’s Landfill Methane Outreach Program. Version 2.0 of the Methodology was developed in cooperation with Loci Controls, Inc.

The collection and combustion of landfill gas (LFG) is an effective method for reducing the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that would have otherwise been vented to the atmosphere. The ACR methodology provides the quantification and accounting frameworks, including eligibility and monitoring requirements for the creation of carbon offset credits from the reductions in GHG emissions resulting from the destruction or utilization of landfill gas at eligible U.S. landfills.

The Methodology is intended to be used as an incentive to increase the below activities and utilizes a flexible additionality framework which is based on either a performance standard or ACR’s three-pronged additionality test.

Projects that reduce methane emissions as a result of the combustion or beneficial use of LFG in any of the following activities are considered a “project activity” under the Methodology:

1)     The destruction of landfill gas in an eligible flare;
2)     The conversion of landfill gas in a turbine, boiler or generator to energy;
3)     The enhancement of landfill gas for injection into a natural gas pipeline; and
4)     The enhancement of landfill gas for use in fleet vehicles, trucks and cars.

Version 2.0 of the Methodology adds a fifth eligible project activity:

5)     The installation of an automated collection system that increases landfill gas collection efficiency above that obtained with standard collection methods with methane destruction, conversion, or enhancement occurring via any of the technologies in 1-4 above.

Automated collection systems hold tremendous promise to increase the collection of methane from landfills through the use of automatic control and measurement devices that eliminate the need for standard manual wellfield tuning. When combined with cloud- based data collection and analysis tools, automated collection systems result in the ability to continuously optimize wellfield conditions resulting in significant increases in landfill gas collection efficiency.