A typical GrowGreen Power Center project provides all the electric power and thermal energy necessary to operate the systems and climate control for the entire facility including the Hydroponic Greenhouses, while providing clean Renewable Energy to the local grid.
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GrowGreen Power Centers incorporate a combination of Renewable Energy Power Systems that include Biomass Power / Solar Thermal & Photovoltaic Power/ Geothermal Power and where appropriate Desalination Plants to produce fresh water.
The mix of technologies will depend on the best resources that meet our technical requirements, both on the growing and power side, and depending on the climate and sustainable resources available for fuel in various regions of the United States, or World Community that each GGP-Center is located. Each of these power systems generate renewable electricity transmitted to the region grid and in the case of adding Desalination, will produce fresh water where water resources are in critical short supply from natural resources, particularly in arid desert regions of the World such as the Middle East and California (see note below).
In the efficient and sustainable use of resources, one of the key advantages of GrowGreen Powers Climate Controlled and highly efficient Hydroponic Greenhouses is in producing 30X-times greater yield than traditional farming while reducing water usage by 85%.
Using only 15% of the water normally needed in the production of vegetables within a hydroponic greenhouse, amounts to an exceptional savings, and the highly efficient use of scarce water resources in California and in other regions of the United States and World Community, where population growth and arid climates are putting ever increasing pressure on increasingly scarce water reserves. Where GGP’s design team is able, the integration of the growing platform with the production of thermally based renewable energy and desalination where applicable, expands the efficiency and the sustainable approach to development of GrowGreen Power Centers Worldwide.
GGP Biomass Power Plants & Waste to Energy Reprocessing of MSW to an Engineered Fuel: GrowGreen Power Centers will typically incorporate a 50-MW Biomass Power Plant, that will deliver 45-net/MW of renewable electricity to the Public Utility and the Regional Grid.
The renewable fuel resource is sourced from the significant daily waste generated from cities and communities where we locate across America. This material is called Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) and it is first received by GrowGreen Power in a Engineered Fuel Facility (EFF) where reusable and valuable materials such as metals, some plastics, glass are recovered to be reused again in manufacturing new products. Once all the reusable material is removed, the remaining waste is then reprocessed into a consistent source of Renewable Engineered Fuel that is used in the combustion cycle of the highly efficient clean operating GrowGreen Power Biomass Plants. This process not only provides a continual reliable source of fuel for the Biomass Plant that generates a significant Base Load Renewable Energy source of power to the Public Utility, but it also significantly reduces the daily waste that has to be land filled, saving land and the natural environment for other uses while reducing the potential environmental damage to Water Table Reserves. With regards to emissions, the Biomass Power Block meets all EPA and State Environmental and Air Quality Standards using state of the art scrubbing and an absorption process to extract the CO2 and recycle it for the hydroponic greenhouse production.
Carbon dioxide (CO2), an emission byproduct of the power generation system, is actually a valued ingredient in high production greenhouses.
Even though the CO2 produced from the biomass combustion process does not increase overall CO2 levels Globally, since it comes from the waste streams currently on the Earth’s surface rather being extracted from nonrenewable sources beneath the Earth’s surface; GGP-Centers go one step further and recover the CO2 produced in the production of electricity through an absorption process, purifying the CO2 to food-grade quality, and introducing it in higher concentrations in the greenhouses for accelerated plant growth. Essentially 1/3 of the CO2 produced is immediately returned for accelerated organic cellular growth in the organic crops in the hydroponic greenhouse increasing production and quality of GGP produce. The remaining purified CO2 can liquified and can be sold to other industrial users that can use the high value pure CO2 in their industrial process.
The Biomass Plant also can process waste Wood Chips resulting of from the proper Maintenance of Forest Reserves and the waste material from the Timber Industry as part of the fuel mix.
By using waste Wood Chips collected from the maintenance of forests, and the MSW collected from major cities and communities within the regional counties that we are located, we provide a significant service to the efficient and more sustainable processing of Municipal Solid Waste and Forest Waste that cities and communities all over the country have to process every year.
GrowGreen Power Centers are able to provide low cost energy, both electric and thermal, for use in the Hydroponic Greenhouse Climate Control and operations to run all the systems and provide heating and cooling.
Thermal energy is recovered from waste heat in the power generation system, harnessed and routed to the climate control systems that maintain optimum growing temperatures throughout the hydroponic greenhouse. This use of thermal energy for these purposes allows more electricity to be sold to the Utility through a long term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and transmitted to the grid and in addition it provides for far lower operational cost and efficiency to the Climate Control of the Greenhouse. It also provides the additional advantage of being able to locate GGP-Centers in many more climate zones than the current generation of advanced Hydroponic Greenhouses (both in hot/humid and in cold/freezing climate zones).
Regarding the benefits to the local economy and to the generation of local jobs where each GGP-Center is located; from the Fuel sourcing and processing of the MSW in the Material Recovery Facility, to the Biomass Power Block to the Hydroponic Greenhouse each GGP-Center will directly create an average of 400 to 500 permanent jobs on a year-round basis, delivering high quality and good paying jobs to the local community.
This includes approximately 300+ jobs in the typical 100-acre greenhouse and packaging support building, 30+ jobs for the Biomass Plant operation, 20+ jobs for the MSW recycling and fuel handling and processing facility, 10+ for the solar thermal/CSP plant as well as additional jobs in the transportation/trucking and other related logistical/support jobs. Each GGP-Center represents a significant boost to the local economy and produces a substantial tax revenue base to the community where we build, own and operate every GGP-Center.
Note: Currently in July 2015 along the Pacific Coast, The State of California is in the third year of severe drought conditions and is experiencing critically low water reserves, in both depleted water table levels and surface reservoirs, brought on by an extended 15 year drought period in the Western United States, as well as population growth, urban and agricultural expansion in the State. Water resources are critically low for farming and urban use and the State has mandated significant water conservation measures throughout California. Desalination to produce fresh water from sea water is once again being considered.