GM assembly plant to implement Detroit waste-to-energy project

By Staff | December 30, 2013

General Motors and Detroit Renewable Energy have announced a new waste-to-energy project that will convert municipal solid waste (MSW) into steam used to heat and cool portions of GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant. Once complete, the project is expected to fulfill 58 percent of the assembly plant’s energy needs. 

“We have 107 landfill-free facilities across the globe that recycle or reuse their waste, with some of it turned into energy,” said Rob Threlkeld, GM’s global manager of renewable energy. “It made sense to explore this option with DRE at Detroit-Hamtramck, given their quality work in helping us manage our energy use at some of our other GM plants.”

Detroit Renewable will process more than 1 million tons of MSW per year into power and steam, while recycling an estimated 40,000 tons of metal. The resulting steam will travel through an 8,300-foot pipeline, delivering 15.8 MW of renewable energy to the assembly plant. Once the project is complete, Detroit-Hamtramck will be the top GM facility in the world by percentage of renewable energy used. The project is expected to be operational this spring.