The City's new Biogas Cogeneration Facility (Cogen) produces renewable power from the methane and carbon dioxide that's released during wastewater treatment. By capturing and using these greenhouse gases, Cogen also keeps tons of pollution out of the air. Learn more about how this facility works in the latest Cogen Video clip (YouTube – Cogen Chapter 2).
Cogen came online at the Willow Lake Wastewater Treatment Plant at the end of 2020. Salem residents can now view up-to-date numbers on continued electricity production (kilowatt-hours) and carbon reductions (tons) directly from the City's website. This data is collected daily from Cogen to share continued progress with our community.
"This new facility is a success for our community, said Salem Mayor Chuck Bennett. "We're producing our own power for Willow Lake, reducing waste, and saving money in the process. I just can't thank our partners enough for the support that we have received."
Total construction costs for the Cogen Facility came to $11,180,000. This new facility would not have been possible without the generous support that the City received from the following project partners:
The Willow Lake Treatment Plant has produced clean, renewable energy from biogas for more than 50 years. This new facility significantly increases clean energy output to the point where half of all the power needed to treat Salem's wastewater is produced at the plant. Cogen is expected to keep about 5,000 metric tons of pollution-causing gases from being released to our atmosphere every year and will save the City more than $300,000 a year in average annual energy costs.