California Plant Transforms Medical Waste to Green Energy
Dec 6, 2017 | Government Technology
(TNS) — HESPERIA, Calif. — Aemerge RedPak officials said Christmas came early as they unveiled their “technological wonder” to the High Desert in the form of the first medical waste treatment facility permitted in California.
The ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday was attended by company, city, state and regional leaders who heralded the new 37,700-square-foot plant in Hesperia as the location where “cutting edge” green technology will be used to safely treat medical waste and put people to work.
RedPak’s patented “Carbonizer” turns organic waste into “syngas” capable of being used for production of clean energy and carbon-based co-products, said RedPak President/CEO Adam Seger, who was at the ceremony on Tuesday along with his family and several investors.
More than 95 percent of the waste processed on the 4.75-acre facility will be landfill diverted and, as a result, significant greenhouse gas emissions associated with waste hauling will be eliminated, Hesperia Economic Development Management Analyst Lisa LaMere said.
“Besides being the only facility in the state permitted to treat all types of medical waste as regulated by the California Department of Public Health, RedPak will have also created 30 new jobs within the community at full ramp-up,” said LaMere, who added that RedPak is “truly” the first major industrial project in the city.
The city remained a “strategic partner” with Seger and his RedPak team as they worked through site selection, pre-development meetings, planning, permitting, construction and the grand opening, LaMere told the Daily Press.
Mayor Pro Tem Russ Blewett praised the Indiana-based company for choosing to locate to Hesperia. He also thanked the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development and the California Pollution Control Financing Authority for their support of the project.
“I want to congratulate the state of California because, on a regular basis, I criticize them. But I want to congratulate you for getting this one right,” said Blewett, as members of the Governor’s office laughed.
Senior Business Development Specialist Diane Banchero, with the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, said Redpak contacted the state in 2015 in an effort to introduce its patented technology for the treatment and elimination of medical waste for which a significant portion cannot, by law, be treated in California.
“Over the past two years, the Treasurer’s Office has been able to provide over $40 million worth of tax-exempt financing to help construct this facility and to build the carbonizers that are so integral and central to this project,” said Deputy State Treasurer Steve Juarez. “We are very proud of the work that we’ve been able to do with Adam and with RedPak over the those two years.”
LaMere said since 2002 she’s been a part of a few “legacy projects” in the city, which have included the Super Target, the Walmart Supercenter and the G Avenue Lead rail track project. But she called the RedPak project something that is “near and dear” to her heart because of its job creation and the impact it will have in the High Desert, state and country.
“Although Hesperia has been particularly successful targeting retail in our economic development attraction efforts, manufacturing remains a top priority for us,” Economic Development Manager Rod Yahnke said. “We are very pleased to see Aemerge RedPak, a green technology manufacturing company, locate in Hesperia.”
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