OPAL, NextEra Energy Building Minnesota’s First RNG Production Facility


OPAL Fuels LLC and NextEra Energy Marketing LLC have unveiled plans to build the first landfill renewable natural gas (RNG) production facility in Minnesota. 

The project will be located at a landfill owned by Republic Services Inc. and interconnect with a pipeline owned by Xcel Energy Inc.

“Our agreement with NextEra Energy Marketing and Republic Services offers a tremendous economic and environmental opportunity for Minnesota,” says Jonathan Maurer, co-CEO of OPAL. “From both a fiscal and sustainability standpoint, RNG is the highest value product you can make from captured landfill gas. We’re proud to play a role in the decarbonization of our nation’s economy by capturing methane to create cleaner fuel for natural gas vehicles.”

For many years, OPAL, which was previously known as Fortistar RNG and TruStar Energy, has collected and processed gas to generate electricity at the 255-acre Pine Bend Landfill in Inver Grove Heights, Minn. NextEra Energy Marketing will work with OPAL to replace the existing power generation facility with a new RNG production facility that will capture 3,200 standard cubic feet per minute of landfill gas and produce over 6 million gas gallon equivalents (GGE) of RNG per year. 

The Pine Bend RNG Project will create approximately 50 to 60 construction jobs. Once completed in the first quarter of 2022, the project will capture and convert landfill methane to produce approximately 2,140 dekatherms of RNG per day. OPAL will operate and manage the RNG project, and RNG fuel will be dispensed to customers via OPAL’s natural gas fueling stations.

For OPAL, the Pine Bend RNG Project is the sixth in a series of 12 RNG projects that will require nearly $500 million of capital investment. Republic Services is involved with gas-to-energy projects at 69 of its landfills and 20% of its fleet is powered by natural gas – including RNG derived from landfills.

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