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North Sky Capital invests in California renewable natural gas project

Veteran impact investing firm North Sky Capital (North Sky) and development, technology, and operations partner Anaergia Services (Anaergia), have begun construction of a renewable natural gas facility at the Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority (VVWRA), located in San Bernardino County, California.The Public Private Partnership (P3) involving VVWRA, Anaergia and North Sky demonstrates a replicable model to meet California organic waste recycling mandates and improve wastewater infrastructure resiliency: retrofitting anaerobic digestion infrastructure to convert organic waste and sludge into pipeline quality renewable natural gas.

The project will utilise Anaergia’s Omnivore high solids anaerobic digestion retrofit to triple capacity and increase redundancy of the existing digester infrastructure. Sludge and food waste will be digested to generate biogas that will be conditioned and upgraded into pipeline quality natural gas utilising systems designed and supplied by Anaergia affiliates. Additionally, Anaergia will operate the gas upgrading facility.
“VVWRA is committed to protecting public health and the environment in the Victor Valley, and this partnership reflects our three core values: collaboration, dedication, and integrity,” says VVWRA General Manager Darron Poulsen. “This project provides operational and capacity resiliency for the future of VVWRA by improving our infrastructure with greater operational flexibility and increased digester redundancy and capacity needed for future growth, while benefiting the agency economically.”
“The VVWRA facility is a great model for use in California: leveraging the existing wastewater treatment plant to meet organic waste recycling requirements, increasing yields of renewable energy, and improving publicly owned infrastructure,” says Andrew Benedek, Anaergia’s Chairman and CEO. “This partnership with North Sky boosts our capability to deliver organics recycling and energy resiliency projects at California wastewater plants, while building a sustainable future for the surrounding communities.”
“The Victor Valley project is a result of the state of California’s steadfast commitment to clean fuels and the waste diversion requirements set forth in Senate Bill 1383. We look forward to our partnership with Anaergia, a market leader with deep experience in this sector, and with the VVWRA to build this sustainable infrastructure project,” adds Adam Bernstein, Managing Director at North Sky Capital. “This investment is a good example of the type of impact investments North Sky has completed over the last two decades.”
The project is located in an Opportunity Zone created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. California Opportunity Zones support new investments in environmental justice, sustainability, climate change, and affordable housing.
The project will beneficially reduce more than 6,000 metric tons of methane (1.5 million CO2 tons equivalent) per year, which otherwise would have been flared or released into the atmosphere. The energy generated will be equivalent to displacing more than two million gallons of diesel fuel per year. Additionally, this project is expected to create approximately 30 prevailing wage jobs via construction and related work.

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