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Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP)

LFGcost–Web — Landfill Gas Energy Cost Model

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The LFGcost-Web model is a Microsoft® Excel spreadsheet tool that provides an initial economic feasibility analysis for developing a landfill gas (LFG) energy project.

Analyses performed using LFGcost-Web are considered estimates and should be used for guidance only.

Background

LFGcost was initially developed in 2002 to help stakeholders estimate the costs of an LFG energy project. Since then, LMOP has routinely updated the tool to reflect changes in the LFG energy industry. In 2015, LMOP undertook a peer review of LFGcost-Web, Version 3.0. For more information on the peer review, see the Emission Guidelines and Compliance Times for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills rule docket (Docket ID# EPA-HQ-OAR-2014-0451-0210). Based on the results of the peer review as well as other updates, LMOP revised certain elements of the model, replacing it with LFGcost-Web, Version 3.1 in 2016. In May 2017, LMOP released Version 3.2.

What's New

LFGcost-Web, Version 3.2, replaces Version 3.1. Significant revisions between Version 3.2 and Version 3.1 of LFGcost-Web include:

  • Added ability to estimate job creation and regional economic ripple effects for the following two project types: standard reciprocating engine-generator sets and direct-use. Economic and job creation benefits are estimates only and are not guaranteed.
  • Updated reference sources for calculating electricity prices and avoided CO2 grid factors based on 2017 Annual Energy Outlook regional electricity grids.
  • Updated default user inputs in Appendix A.

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Project Types

LFGcost-Web allows users to choose from 12 LFG energy project types, and gives users the option of including costs for a new gas collection and flaring system.

LFG Energy Project Types
Direct-use system (boiler, greenhouse, etc.)
Boiler retrofit
High Btu processing plant (upgrading gas to pipeline quality)
Onsite compressed natural gas (CNG) production and fueling station
Leachate evaporator
Electricity generation – Standard turbine-generator sets
Electricity generation – Standard reciprocating engine-generator sets
Electricity generation – Microturbine-generator sets
Electricity generation – Small reciprocating engine-generator sets
CHP – Reciprocating engine-generator sets
CHP – Turbine-generator sets
CHP – Microturbine-generator sets

Model Outputs

The model calculates LFG generation profiles based on landfill characteristics and other user inputs and then determines various project-specific outputs.

Primary Model Outputs
Design and average project sizes
Total installed capital cost for year of construction
Annual costs for initial year of operation
Internal rate of return
Net present value at year of construction
Years to breakeven
Amount of methane collected and destroyed
Greenhouse gas value of amount of methane utilized by project
Amount of carbon dioxide from avoided energy generation
Optional Model Outputs (for standard reciprocating engine-generator and direct-use projects)
Jobs created within the state (construction phase and operating phase)
Earnings impact within the state ($000, construction phase and operating phase)
State-wide economic output ($000, construction phase and operating phase)

The default inputs and costs that are estimated by LFGcost-Web are based on typical project designs and for typical landfill situations.

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