Potawatomi tribe plans biogas facility near casino

The Forest County Potawatomi Community of Wisconsin plans to build a biogas generation facility on a portion of an employee parking lot west of the Potawatomi Bingo Casino in the Menomonee Valley in Milwaukee.

The biogas facility would be built on a 2.66-acre site in the parking lot. The facility would have a 9,760-square-foot building and two 1.05-million gallon, 60-foot tall, digester tanks, each about 5,170 square feet.

About six people will work in the facility, according to the tribe.

“The facility will use a natural biological process, anaerobic digestion, to produce a fuel very similar to natural gas, using as a feedstock the byproduct materials generated in the Milwaukee area’s many food and beverage industries,” the tribe said in documents filed with the city of Milwaukee. “The solids remaining after gas production are also useful as a soil amendment and for a variety of other beneficial purposes.”

The facility will produce about 2.0 mega watts of gross electrical power output, the tribe says. The power will be sold to Wisconsin Energy Corp. under a biogas production buy-back tariff, according to the tribe.

The casino will use excess heat recovered from the biogas facility for its water and space heating needs.

“The biogas generation facility will support the tribe’s overall goal of becoming energy self-sufficient using renewable carbon-neutral resources,” the tribe said in its filing with the city.

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