A New York City site once known for the size of its garbage heaps would be home to alternative energy sources that could generate 20 megawatts of renewable power, now that the city is soliciting bids to build and operate a wind farm and solar power plant there.
City officials put out a request for proposals on Tuesday to build solar and wind power facilities at Staten Island's Fresh Kills landfill. With 75 acres available for lease, city officials say the project at the closed landfill could generate enough energy to power 6,000 homes and would double the city's renewable energy capacity.
"New York City needs energy to keep it running, and we want that power to be reliable, clean, and affordable," Deputy Mayor Cas Holloway said.
Andrew Darrell of the Environmental Defense Fund's New York office said clean energy projects like this one "put us on a path to a future with healthy air and economic growth."
"It's great that a landfill like Fresh Kills is helping to lead the transition from polluting power to competitive renewable energy," he said.
The landfill held the city's garbage for 53 years, handling more than 2 billion tons of trash before being closed in March 2001. It reopened briefly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack as a sorting place for debris from the World Trade Center.
In 2006, the city's Department of Parks and Recreation started working to turn the former dump into Freshkills Park.