General Motors and Detroit Renewable Energy (DRE) are working together to turn solid municipal waste from Metro Detroit into process steam that will be used to heat and cool portions of GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant. When the project is operational, 58 percent of the GM plant’s energy needs will come from renewable energy, making Detroit-Hamtramck the top GM facility in the world by percentage of renewable energy used.
DRE is able to process more than 1 million tons of municipal solid waste into electric power and steam while also recycling nearly 40,000 tons of metal annually, providing energy to more than 145 buildings throughout downtown Detroit.
For GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, the steam will travel 8,300 feet through a pipe originating at DRE and ending at the factory, providing 15.8 MW to the plant.
Construction of the new steam line and associated energy infrastructure will begin later this month and become operational in spring 2014.