DECATUR, GA – DeKalb County, Ga., recently opened its previously announced renewable energy facility at a landfill. The new facility will provide “renewable natural gas” that will eventually fuel 70 sanitation vehicles in the County’s fleet. The County’s ultimate goal is to convert entire fleet of 306 sanitation vehicles so they run on natural gas or to replace units with natural gas-fueled vehicles.

The on-site fueling station for County vehicles is scheduled for completion in the fall, but the newly opened facility at the landfill will be connected to local utility Atlanta Gas Light's pipeline in May. The County expects to save $3 million in fuel costs due to the lower price for natural gas when compared with diesel.

The program received funds from a U.S. Department of Energy grant made to Clean Cities Atlanta as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

This effort is just one of many in the County. In late 2011, the County purchased a number of CNG-fueled trucks as part of its efforts to reduce the region's dependence on petroleum fuels, cut costs, and reduce emissions.