Wind blade disposal generates $603K for Casper since May 2019 - Casper, WY Oil City News
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Wind blade disposal generates $603K for Casper since May 2019

(Brendan LaChance, Oil City)

CASPER, Wyo. — Casper Solid Waste Division Manager Cynthia Langston updated the Casper City Council during their Tuesday, Sept. 22 work session regarding the disposal of wind turbine blades at the Casper Regional Landfill.

Langston said that since the landfill began receiving wind turbine blades and motor housing for disposal in May 2019, $603,000 in revenue has been generated for the city.

“I just love wind turbines,” she said. “To date, we’ve made $603,000. This is one of the best projects we have for revenue.”

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Langston noted that the the turbine blades are inert, unlike some other materials that can cause environmental concern when they are disposed. She added that “staff have been brilliant” in finding ways to fill the empty spaces in the wind turbine blades themselves with other disposed materials, maximizing use of space.

As of Sept. 16, the landfill has received a total of 1,124 turbine blades for disposal. Those have come from the Glenrock, Saratoga/Hanna and Arlington areas.

While some have expressed criticism because the blades aren’t recyclable, Langston said her concern is managing the landfill.

“I am with the city and we are in the business in burying stuff,” she said.

Langston noted that the city would be able to dig up the blades and re-purpose them if a future use for the buried blades becomes viable.

PacifiCorp said in a press release earlier on Tuesday that they are sending decommissioned blades from projects in Wyoming to Tennessee to support the development of wind blade recycling technology.

“Crews began transporting decommissioned blades September 15, 2020, from the recently repowered Dunlap Wind Project near Medicine Bow, Wyoming, to a facility operated by Carbon Rivers, LLC in Knoxville, Tennessee,” PacifiCorp says. “Once at the facility, the retired blades will be used to demonstrate recycling technology that will transform them into new composites.”

“The new blade recycling technology recovers glass fiber from reinforced polymer composites, allowing the material to be used for vehicles, other renewable energy system components, agricultural products, and performance sports equipment.”

Further details about the disposal of wind turbine blades at the Casper Regional Landfill are available in the council’s work packet.

If you would like to contact members of the Casper City Council regarding this or any other issue, here is their contact information:

Mayor Steve Freel (Ward III, Term expires 1/3/23):

Vice Mayor Khrystyn Lutz (Ward I, Term expires 1/3/23):

Councilman Charlie Powell (Ward II, Term Expires 1/5/21):

Councilman Shawn Johnson (Ward II, Term expires 1/3/23):

Councilman Ken Bates (Ward II, Term expires 1/5/21):

Councilman Steve Cathey (Ward III, Term Expires 1/5/21):

Councilman Bob Hopkins (Ward I, Term expires 1/5/21):

Councilman Mike Huber (Ward I, Term expires 1/5/21):

Councilman Ray Pacheco (Ward III, Term expires 1/3/23):

Council members can also be reached by mail at: 200 N. David Street, 82601

If you would like to contact members in your specific ward, but don’t know which ward you are in, a map is available at the City of Casper’s website.