Electric Power Research Institute
The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) conducts research, development and distribution relating to the generation, delivery and use of electricity, and is committed to supporting and developing innovative solutions to the challenges that face electricity producers and consumers. One such challenge is what to do with the millions of tons of synthetic gypsum (calcium sulfate) that power plants produce each year. Gypsum is produced when certain types power plant “scrubbers” remove sulfur (mandated by the Clean Air Act to prevent acid rain) from their exhaust plumes. The product is a very pure and high quality material with a number of beneficial uses. However, a significant percentage of the synthetic gypsum generated every year must still be landfilled, at a cost to both the producers and the environment.
Greenleaf Advisors is helping EPRI develop and coordinate primary research with partners like The Ohio State University to find and deploy environmentally beneficial uses of synthetic gypsum. Our research underway in Ohio is studying gypsum’s effect on phosphorus in farm fields. Excess phosphorus from fertilizers and manure often makes its way into our rivers and lakes, where it triggers blooms of toxic algae that harm regional economies, human health, and the environment. This study is demonstrating on actual working farms that a single, cost-effective application of gypsum can quickly and dramatically reduce the phosphorous that leaves the field in water runoff.
Greenleaf has been assisting EPRI with the coordination and management of the research team, identification of appropriate field sites, and outreach and education initiatives to ensure that the people and policy-makers who need to know about and benefit from these techniques, are able to. Our experience working with a wide range of stakeholders made us the right choice to not only help put together the research team, but to reach out to industry, academia, and government agencies with the valuable lessons we have learned.
Although the phosphorus that contributed to the ban on drinking tap water for most of Toledo’s residents this weekend came from many sources, most experts will point to agricultural runoff as the primary culprit.Continue reading
Updated May 14, 2015 Calcium Sulfate (gypsum) soil amendment reduces SRP loading by over 50% Nutrient runoff from agricultural fields is one source of pollution that impacts the integrity of our waterways and the quality of our critical water resources. Fertilizers and animal manures are important sources of the nutrients nitrogen and phosphorus. These help […]Continue reading