The Three Rivers Solid Waste Authority is negotiating terms with the Canadian company Enerkem to build a new material-recycling facility at the Pontotoc landfill.
The Oxford Eagle reports (http://bit.ly/wB0pAg) that would allow residents under TRSWA's seven-county umbrella to go back to the days when all household trash was tossed into one garbage bag, before the days of sorting for recycling.
The two companies have signed a Memorandum of Intent to build the $30 million facility.
"It's not a done deal, but it's pretty close," said Randy Kelly, executive director of Three Rivers Planning and Development District.
Oxford-Lafayette County Recycling Coordinator Amberlyn Liles said she's only heard some basic information about the deal with Enerkem.
"I don't have enough information to make any real comment," she said. "We have a great recycling program here now. We are going to continue doing what we do until we're told differently."
Kelly said Oxford would have the option to participate in the new collection process.
"Nothing would prevent Oxford or anyone else for opting to continue the recycling program they are currently running," Kelly said.
The new facility would separate the recyclables from the trash — metal, cans, cardboard, plastics and other materials — and the balance of trash would be shredded and put into a gasification system that would produce methanol. That gas would then be converted into ethanol, which is Enerkem's main commodity.
Enerkem expects to produce 10 million gallons of ethanol per year.
Information from: Oxford Eagle, http://www.oxfordeagle.com