KC Water to capture biogas from wastewater treatment

Jan. 17, 2024
KC Water selected Spire to construct a renewable natural gas facility to repurpose the biogas generated from Kansas City’s Blue River Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Energy company Spire announced that it is partnering with KC Water on Kansas City, Missouri’s first renewable natural gas (RNG) facility, which will capture methane emissions from the wastewater treatment process to generate renewable energy.

KC Water, a water utility company in Kansas City, selected Spire to construct the RNG facility, which is an extension of a current KC Water project. It will repurpose biogas generated from the city’s Blue River Wastewater Treatment Plant into RNG.

The facility’s project was approved on October 26, 2023 by the Kansas City Council. Spire says that the new facility is expected to be complete in 2025.

Spire plans to include the renewable energy generated at the facility in their natural gas supply for customers to heat homes, fuel businesses and potentially fuel vehicles. Because RNG is fully compatible with conventional natural gas and existing pipeline infrastructure, customers will not need to change their natural gas appliances to reap the environmental benefits of RNG.

By capturing emissions that otherwise would be emitted into the air, the project will assist KC Water with improving air quality near their wastewater facility. KC Water estimates it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 20,000 tons of CO2 equivalent per year. The partnership will also generate approximately $1 million of revenue for KC Water per year.

"We appreciate the City of Kansas City for selecting Spire for this project,” said Nick Popielski, Spire’s vice president of sustainability. “RNG will help us meet our customers' growing interest in a lower carbon, affordable and reliable source of energy.”

Spire Missouri will serve as the developer on the project with Burns & McDonnell providing engineering and construction expertise. Spire anticipates it will produce 0.3 billion cubic feet (BCF) of natural gas a year which would be enough energy to supply 4300 homes in the Kansas City region with natural gas.