Los Angeles Demonstration Project

The City of Los Angeles and Terralog Technologies will demonstrate an innovative technology to convert biosolids into clean energy by deep well injection and geothermal biodegradation. Slurry mixtures of treated, non-hazardous, municipal sludge and water will be injected into a high permeability unconsolidated sandstone formation at the Terminal Island Treatment Plant operated by City of Los Angeles. Multiple injection and monitoring wells will be drilled and completed in weakly consolidated, high permeability, sand formations at depths from about 3,800 to 5,300 ft. Up to 400 tons per day of biosolids will be injected into soft, high porosity, formation sands, using technology optimized for solid waste slurry injection, for a period of 5 years. At this depth the material will undergo a natural process of high-temperature anaerobic biodegradation, similar to the process of diagenesis naturally deposited organic layers undergo over time after deposition and burial. Retention in the high temperature (114° – 159°F, or 45° -
70°C) saline environment of the deep geologic formation will treat and convert the biosolids into methane, carbon dioxide, and non-volatile residual solids. The carbon dioxide will be preferentially dissolved and sequestered in the formation brine, while relatively high purity methane will migrate and become trapped in the reservoir to be recovered for beneficial use at the surface, or stored for subsequent use.

Environmental & Economic Advantages

The demonstration project will include extensive field monitoring and sampling from the offset monitoring wells to quantify slurry placement, biodegradation rates, carbon dioxide and methane separation, carbon dioxide sequestration and saturation in formation brine, and free gas migration and production. This technology provides the following environmental and economic benefits over current practices:

• Enhanced treatment and sterilization of biosolids
• Greater protection for surface and shallow groundwaters
• Provides a local solution, reducing long distance truck traffic
• Reduced greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere
• Recycles waste into high quality clean energy for beneficial use

Environmental Advantages Subsurface Geothermal Treatment

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