MARSEILLES, Ill.-Waste Recovery Inc., the Dallas-based tire-derived fuel (TDF) company, broke ground June 13 for a $5 million TDF processing facility in Marseilles, 30 miles west of Joliet, Ill. The Marseilles TDF plant will be one of two WRI will build in Illinois to supply Illinois Power Co. with 60,000 tons of fuel annually, according to Goodyear, a 6 percent shareholder in WRI.
Shredded tires from Marseilles and the second plant will go to the Illinois Power facility in Baldwin, Ill., southeast of St. Louis. When completed, the two plants will have the combined capacity to process more than 15 million tires per year.
The Marseilles factory should be completed and operational in the fourth quarter of this year. WRI and Illinois Power are still considering possible sites, all in southern Illinois, for the second plant.
Andy Eastman, Goodyear team leader of facilities engineering, praised the Illinois Department of Energy & Natural Resources (ENR) for aiding the WRI project. ``The agency assisted permitting, financed tests and encouraged the use of scrap tires as a valuable resource,'' Mr. Eastman said.
The agency: gave $500,000 to WRI to purchase and install tire shredding equipment at Marseilles; will give Illinois Power another $457,000 to buy TDF handling equipment; and sponsored $100,000 worth of TDF testing at the Baldwin plant.
Over the last 4 years, the ENR has spent more than $4 million to fund 40 scrap tire recovery projects. ``ENR will continue to work aggressively to develop programs to promote the use of scrap tires,'' the agency said in a press release.
Illinois Power said it expects to burn about 7.5 million scrap tires annually at Baldwin, equivalent to approximately 60 percent of the scrap tires generated each year in Illinois. The Marseilles plant will employ about 40 workers, it added.
Founded in 1982, WRI opened its first TDF facility that year in Portland, Ore. Since then, the publicly held company has established plants in Houston and Atlanta.