There isn’t a spot in the country that has been harder hit by the financial meltdown than Flint, MI. Forbes recently labeled Flint as the city that has the longest road to recovery too. It’s bad in the birthplace of General Motors and the financial climate is bad there right now – really bad. I know this first hand. That’s where I live.
But the city might soon lead the nation with the country’s first biogas plant. This plant will be built with the help of Swedish Biogas International and eventually help fuel the city’s municipal vehicle fleet, which in turn should save the city millions of dollars. That is, if the plant ever gets built.
This plant was officially announced last September when the King of Sweden visited Flint and spoke at a Kettering University. He spoke of how biogas helped his country become fuel independent and can put Flint back on track. The King, Michigan’s Governor Granholm, Flint’s mayor, the US Ambassador to Sweden and others then ceremonially broke ground.
The facility will be designed to take the human waste and convert it into biogas. This biogas would then be used to heat the facility. If an addition $4-million can be raised once the first part of the plant is completed, an addition will be built to produce biomethane which will fuel city buses and other vehicles.
The city has a large budget problem right now and it’s expected to get worse when GM attempts to renegotiate taxes on its five remaining facilities within the city. This plant should take some burden off of the city.
But construction on the $8 to $10-million plant hasn’t started. The waste treatment facility where it is suppose to go hasn’t been touched. Supposedly construction on the facility sometime in August. The plan laid out by Swedish Biogas International still includes to have the plant up and running by the end of the year making it the first of its kind in the United States. And Flint could use something positive to dwell on for a change even if it is shit gas.