Feb 09

State Representative John W. Scibak joined his colleagues in the House of Representatives today in passing legislation that allows closed landfills to be used for renewable energy.

Under this legislation, cities and towns will have the option of building renewable energy projects on capped landfills after receiving a permit from the Department of Environmental Protection. Previously, some cities and towns that received state funding to cap their landfills were limited to recreational uses of the resulting closed landfill, in the form of a mandatory deed restriction. The legislation adds renewable energy generation as an acceptable use of these capped landfills.

Additionally, under current law, an exemption for utility-owned solar electricity project building is set to expire in 2012. This new legislation extends that exemption for two more years until 2014. “This bill provides communities with more options to reduce costs and generate clean energy,” said House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo. “There are several communities considering building renewable energy generation projects on their capped landfills; however they were limited by landfill use deed restrictions.  This legislation allows those projects to move forward, creating jobs, and reducing their energy costs.”   “As we continue to strive toward our ambitious renewable energy generation goals, this is a small but significant step to ensure that we in the Legislature continue to promote renewable energy projects in our municipalities, creating both green jobs and energy cost savings for cities and towns” said Representative John D. Keenan, House Chair of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy.