Mike Rogozinski, Landfill Gas Expert
Mike Rogozinski has more than 25 years’ experience in the engineering and design field, including 20 years in the landfill gas drilling and construction industry. A registered professional engineer, Mr. Rogozinski’s expertise encompasses the design and construction of landfill gas and leachate collection systems and related projects. He has managed successful design-build projects from the initial stages to final project completion. He has managed and supervised an estimating department responsible for being awarded millions of dollars in contracts annually. Mr. Rogozinski and his teams work with top-level industry clients, including Waste Management, Republic Services, Advanced Disposal, WCA, and Waste Connections. He holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Cincinnati and a master of business administration degree from Baldwin Wallace College.
What is landfill gas (LFG) and why is it important to our clients?
Landfill gas is generally 50 percent methane, 45 percent carbon dioxide (CO2), and 5 percent balance gas. It develops from the decomposing of trash in a landfill. Landfill gas is a greenhouse gas, and owners of the landfill are regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to control gas emissions and offsite migration. Another important factor for the owners is that LFG can be an income source through landfill gas distribution projects, CNG projects, and using engines to produce electricity.
How has the LFG market changed since you have been in the industry?
One of the biggest changes that I have seen recently is that there is more attention being paid to odors. Quite a few of the gas collection system expansions that we are seeing are due to odor control rather than being driven by regulatory agencies. Another change is the sites that are having subsurface reactions, causing very high temperatures and the creation of hydrogen gas. These reaction sites create a need for their own special landfill gas control systems.
Do you think there will be more landfill gas-to-energy projects in the future?
This depends on the energy market. If the price for natural gas and electricity remains low, then the chances for more gas-to-energy projects are very low. High natural gas and electricity prices as well as tax incentives for renewable energy will provide opportunities for the development of more landfill gas-to-energy projects. A development that could cause a decrease in the number of projects in the future is the trend to divert organics from the landfill to compost facilities. Organics are needed to produce LFG and the lesser amount of organics in the landfill will reduce the amount of LFG produced.
How have the designs of landfill gas systems evolved over the years?
The basic designs have remained pretty consistent through the years. The biggest change is the improvement in the materials, processing equipment, pumping equipment, and the monitoring equipment for landfill gas.
How does Tetra Tech’s solid waste practice help our clients address landfill gas challenges?
Tetra Tech can provide a turnkey approach to landfill gas needs. We are experienced in gas system design, construction, operation and maintenance, and gas-to-energy development. Our designers visit the sites and talk with the operations managers. We provide constructability reviews and high-quality construction of the system that will work as designed and be cost-effective. Upon completion, Tetra Tech can provide operation and maintenance services for the gas system to comply with environmental regulations and ensure that the gas system operates well into the future.