Recovery and utilization of landfill methane


Industrial production can exacerbate global climate change, but technology can also be used to close the production loop and generate new forms of energy in the process. In China, government demonstration projects illustrate the viability of this approach.

  • Executing agency: UN/DESA Division for Sustainable Development
  • Start date: 7 September 1996
  • Partners: UNDP, Global Environment Facility, NEPA
  • Total budget: USD 4,959,804

The main objective of the project is to reduce global climate change through the capture of methane, which is released from landfills in China. Through field demonstrations at three sites, the project will illustrate the feasibility of technologies to capture landfill gas, extract methane and use it directly as fuel and for electricity generation. The project will also set up institutional mechanisms for the sale of extracted methane to neighboring users and electricity to the grid. In so doing, the project will demonstrate ways to overcome barriers to the use of landfill gas technology and to the fully competitive sale of methane and electricity of the energy bureaus and companies. The demonstrations and training activities will strengthen the capacity of the implementing agency (NEPA) to disseminate the results and to undertake similar projects elsewhere in China.