Grants would help make City operations greener

The City of Tacoma has applied for $850,000 in grants from the Washington State Department of Ecology that could help make its operations a little greener.

The first grant would help pay for equipment to allow for the recycling of asphalt pavement and asphalt shingles — items generated in large quantities by City operations. Asphalt is generated during road repair and paving operations and shingles are delivered to the City transfer station in large amounts. The City now pays for disposal of these items. Utilizing them in the production of asphalt would not only reduce the operating expenses in the general fund, but also allow waste materials to be put back into productive use. The City is applying for two grants: $550,000 with a City match of $137,500; and $200,000 with a City match of $50,000.

The second grant would help pay for a feasibility study to construct and operate a compost/anaerobic digestion facility in the City. The facility would handle organic materials such as food waste, fats, oils, greases, and other organic feedstocks that the potential to create methane and compost. The methane would be compressed and utilized as fuel in the City’s Environmental Services fleet. In addition, the residue would be composted and utilized in the production of Tagro mix. The City is applying for $100,000 with a City match of $25,000.