August 3 was the deadline in Glendale for energy professionals to submit proposals on how Glendale could switch to renewable resources for generating electricity. In all, 34 proposals were received and are now under review, with a public presentation of the review findings expected around mid-October, according to Steven Zurn, the general manager for Glendale Water and Power (GWP).
The proposals are the latest input to Glendale’s ongoing debate on how best to produce electricity. The question before residents and officials of Glendale is whether to upgrade the fossil-fuel technology at its Grayson power plant or switch to renewables
NELA will be affected by Glendale’s decision, because either outcome will force Glendale to come up with a new way to deal with methane gas emitted at its Scholl Canyon landfill in the hills above Eagle Rock. Currently, Glendale transports the methane by pipeline to Grayson where it is used as fuel. But the methane will no longer be needed if Grayson is upgraded or if Glendale switches to renewables.
So, with each step forward in Glendale’s electricity debate, a reckoning on Scholl Canyon also moves closer. One plan by GWP – to build a biogas plant at Scholl Canyon to convert the methane to electricity — has met with opposition in Eagle Rock for political and environmental reasons. It has also been held up by a complex Environmental Impact Review that could take another eight to 10 months to complete.
In the meantime, Glendale’s energy future and NELA’s role in it remain a problem with no easy answers.