Tennessee-based Aries Clean Energy is on its way to construct New Jersey’s first biosolids-only gasification facility after receiving all approvals from the state’s Department of Environmental Protection.

“With these approvals, this marks the first large-scale fluidized bed gasification system to process biosolids in the world,” said CEO Gregory Bafalis. “Aries’ patented gasification system eliminates the need for environmentally harmful landfilling or incineration of biosolids, while producing beneficial renewable energy and biochar.”

The Aries Linden Biosolids Gasification Facility could prevent 130,000 tons/year of waste from reaching landfills, according to the company, as 400 tons of biosolids are expected to be converted every day into renewable energy.

The gasification facility would create biochar using a fluidized bed gasification system that was designed specifically for processing biosolids. The closed-loop system requires no fossil fuel usage throughout the process. In most cases, 85% of the raw materials gasified would be converted to fuel gas, while the other 15% would become biochar, Aries noted.

Biochar may be used as fuel for cement kilns, agricultural soil amendment, base material to produce industrial colorant carbon black, a filtering agent for liquids or gases to remove contaminants or odors, and a proprietary product, Aries GREEN.

The renewable energy generated would then be recovered and used within the system, so no fossil fuels would be used during normal operations. Aries expects to reduce greenhouse gases because of a reduction in trucking miles associated with conventional disposal methods, as well as eliminating methane generated from land application of biosolids.

The Linden Roselle Sewerage Authority (LRSA) complex in New Jersey is to be repurposed to house the facility. Construction and modifications on the old LRSA complex are scheduled to begin in the 3Q2019, and it could be fully operational by the end of the year.

In addition to serving New Jersey customers in Edison, Elizabeth, Jersey City, Newark and Paterson, the facility could serve New York consumers in New York City, Long Island, and in the Mid and Lower Hudson Valley. Aries also is eyeing potential Connecticut customers in Bridgeport, Danbury, New Haven, Norwalk, Stamford and Waterbury.