Rick Smith, CR Gazette –
CEDAR RAPIDS — Though a Florida firm has been talking about building a power plant in the metro area that zaps garbage into energy, no one is suggesting that such a facility will eliminate the need for a landfill.
So the Cedar Rapids/Linn County Solid Waste Agency’s board of directors is moving ahead as planned to gradually expand the Site 2 landfill on Marion’s border at County Home Road and Highway 13.
The board has approved a $4.27 million contract to begin a 14-acre, third-and-fourth phase expansion of a five-phase plan. These phases will add at least nine more years to the life of the landfill once the work is complete next July.
A fifth phase will follow in the years ahead, with the projected life of the landfill reaching out 25 to 28 years in total. A trash-to-energy plant would extend it further.
The Site 2 landfill opened on 30 acres in 1972 and added 13 acres in 2001. The current expansion program there began with a first phase in September 2008 and a second phase two years later.
The waste agency’s Site 1 landfill near downtown Cedar Rapids, commonly called Mount Trashmore, reopened to take in debris from the Floods of 2008. It’s expected to close again in 2013.
Plasma Power of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has been talking to leaders in Marion and Cedar Rapids for more than a year about locating a waste-to-energy plant in the area.