October 25, 2007

City to collect, sell methane gas from dump to the Coast Guard

Baltimore will capture methane gas from the Quarantine Road Sanitary Landfill and sell it to the U.S. Coast Guard under an arrangement approved yesterday by the city Board of Estimates.

The Coast Guard will pay the city $200,000 a year for 15 years for the gas, which will be used to make electricity and heat for the Coast Guard Yard at 2401 Hawkins Point Road. City officials said the arrangement was equivalent to removing 33,000 cars from the road annually.

"To be able to capture this gas that normally just seeps out into the air, ... we're now recapturing it and making energy," Mayor Sheila Dixon said. "It helps in our whole `green' effort."

City officials said about 16,000 tons of the gas is generated by the landfill every year. Coast Guard officials will use the gas to light and heat its 112-acre facility. A Coast Guard official said he expects the project to be complete next fall.

Based on the Coast Guard's design, the city will construct a gas-collection facility at the landfill at an estimated cost of $2 million. The cost will be reimbursed by the Coast Guard during the first two years of the full-plant operation. The gas will be pumped to the yard, and a plant will be built there to turn it into electricity.

"With a renewable energy source, we'll able to be that much more effective in our response to whatever emergencies the area may have," said Capt. Stephen C. Duca, commanding officer of the yard.

The arrangement will allow the Coast Guard to meet federal requirements to find alternative sources of energy and help the city meet requirements to collect and combust the gas, officials said.

"Not only is this a fiscally sound and environmentally friendly endeavor, but it is also a plus in that it benefits the city and the Coast Guard," George L. Winfield, director of public works, said in a statement.

John Fritze

Carroll County

: Education

Johnson named to instruction post

The Carroll County school board voted yesterday to appoint middle school Principal Steve Johnson as the new assistant superintendent of instruction.

Johnson, who previously served as the school system's director of curriculum and instruction for five years, is replacing Lorraine Fulton, who resigned this month. Johnson had just begun his second year as principal of Northwest Middle School in Taneytown.

"I'm looking forward to working with all the schools again," Johnson said, adding that he hoped to bring stability to a position that has gone through several changes over the past decade.

In his new job, Johnson will advise the superintendent on instruction-related matters and be responsible for the delivery of instruction systemwide.

Arin Gencer


: Dental health

Free exams today, tomorrow for seniors

Free dental cleaning for senior citizens is available today and tomorrow at the Baltimore City Community College's Dental Hygiene Clinic, 2901 Liberty Heights Ave. The free oral exams - including X-rays and cleaning - are open to those ages 62 and older as part of National Dental Hygiene Month. Openings are available both days. To schedule an appointment: Grace Simmons, 410- 462-7712.


Granby St. portion to be closed today

City transportation officials are planning to close a section of Granby Street north of Little Italy from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today. The closure - affecting the 1100 block, between Central Avenue and Lloyd Street - is needed to complete paving work in the area, according to officials. Detours will be marked.

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