• The Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County expanded its solid waste management system, adding the first-of-its-kind waste-to-energy facility to be built in the United States in more than 15 years. The new WTE plant has the capacity to process 1 million tons of municipal solid waste per year, generate enough electricity to power 56,000 homes, and reduce landfilled waste by up to 85 percent.

file under: Design-Build, Energy, Environment, Facilities, Government, North America, Smart Energy, Sustainability, United States

Energy + Environment

Renewable Waste-to-Energy Facility Fuels Florida County

Solid Waste Authority Adds State-of-the-Art Sustainability

The Solid Waste Authority (SWA) of Palm Beach County expanded its award-winning solid waste management system, adding a new waste-to-energy (WTE) facility—the first of its kind to be built in the United States in more than 15 years—to its Palm Beach County Renewable Energy Park. CDM Smith collaborated with Babcock & Wilcox Power Generation Group Inc. and KBR to provide this new, 3,000-tons-per-day mass burn WTE facility, which will process solid waste for the county’s 1.3 million residents and businesses.

Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County skybridgeSolid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County skybridge

With the capacity to process 1 million tons of municipal solid waste per year, the new WTE plant will generate approximately 100 megawatts, enough electricity to power 56,000 homes, and significantly reduce landfilled waste in Palm Beach County by up to 85 percent. Our involvement in the $667 million project included design-build responsibilities for a LEED ® Platinum-certified visitor center and an elevated walkway between the visitor center and refuse building. The center’s green features include an elevator gallery penthouse on the rooftop, planted roof garden and rain garden. Photovoltaic sun canopies covering the surrounding parking areas and sidewalks outside of these buildings will add to the site’s sustainability.

Water conservation is another key project component. We designed an industrial-sized rainwater harvest system projected to capture 10 to 12 million gallons of rainwater per year from 7 acres of roof, reducing the facility’s demand for process water by approximately 15 percent. We are also employing an energy-efficient, cascading water management system that appropriates water to areas of the facility according to the quality of water needed for different processes. This innovative system serves as a model for minimizing the need for clean water sources, while maximizing the recycling of water within a facility and reducing the need for wastewater treatment and disposal.

We were also responsible for the design and construction of the tipping floor, air pollution control, ash handling and maintenance/warehouse buildings. Included in the construction of those buildings are enhanced architectural treatment, fire protection, utilities, electrical, structural, heating, ventilation, air conditioning and plumbing services.

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Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County