Blue Sphere has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Vtorma Ecology to implement a joint implementation project at the Alma Aty municipal landfill site in Kazakhstan.

The project is to capture waste methane gas for flaring and at a later date, potentially generate electricity and/or heat.

Blue Sphere will be the investor and co-developer of the project together with Vtorma, the operator of the landfill. The project will commence with a feasibility study on installing a flare at the Alma Aty municipal landfill site.

According to Blue Sphere, the landfill site receives over 1,150 tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) per day, primarily from Alma Aty, Kazakhstan and its suburbs. When MSW is deposited in landfills, methane is generated due to decomposition.

The annual estimated emission reduction units (ERUs) for the landfill is estimated at 65,000 ERUs per year. If all conditions to final agreement are fulfilled and permits granted as anticipated, the ERUs are expected to start in 2011.

The total gross income to Blue Sphere over the life of the project based on 65,000 ERUs per year is estimated at $7m, calculated at current and escalating ERU prices, the company said.

The total investment for the project is estimated at $1.5m, not including the cost of an electricity and heat system.

Shlomi Palas, CEO of Blue Sphere, said: “This is another exciting project for us. In the near term we expect to complete a feasibility study and negotiate a final agreement; once complete we can begin implementation of the project in a timely manner.

“Eastern Europe is a very large market for emission reduction projects and Blue Sphere’s expertise at scoping and managing the projects gives us an opportunity to work with landfill operators who are committed to reducing greenhouse gases and cleaning up their landfill sites.”