This crra.org website is no longer active, but is being maintained as a historical record for the Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority (“CRRA”).
On June 6, 2014, Public Act 14-94 established the Materials Innovation and Recycling Authority (“MIRA”) as the successor authority to CRRA. As of this date, MIRA assumed control of all of CRRA’s assets, rights, duties and obligations.
For new information about MIRA, go to www.ctmira.org
On This Page:
MAINTAINING FINANCIAL STABILITY
Not long ago, CRRA’s future was clouded. Its Mid-Connecticut Project had lost $220 million in the Enron bankruptcy, and a new board of directors and management team were put into place to restore the agency’s financial stability.
Thanks to an aggressive plan of cost-cutting, contract renegotiation and revenue enhancement, the Mid-Connecticut Project is on solid financial footing. And with the receipt of $111 million from its sale of the Enron banrkuptcy claim, the Mid-Connecticut Project should have stable disposal fees for the forseeable future.
That means the CRRA administration can focus more of its energies on the agency’s core mission – planning for the future.
SOLUTIONS FOR POST-CONTRACT YEARS
Make no mistake – the future is here.
For instance, the interlocal agreement that created the Bridgeport Project expired in 2008, but those cities and towns needed ways to get rid of their trash beyond that expiration date. So CRRA produced an agreement with Wheelabrator that will enable 12 of the former Bridgeport Project towns to continue to bring their trash to the Bridgeport plant -- at a lower cost.
And as CRRA’s other projects dissolve, more towns will look to CRRA for cost-effective, environmentally sound disposal solutions.
CRRA is hard at work to develop those solutions.
PROMOTING BENEFICIAL ASH REUSE
The trash-to-energy process – which combines recycling with conversion of solid waste into electricity – reduces the waste stream by as much as 80 to 85 percent. Even with that reduction, Connecticut still has a pressing need for landfill capacity.
Trash-to-energy plants produce ash, and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) requires that ash to be deposited into specially engineered double-lined disposal areas. There are only two such areas in Connecticut – one at CRRA’s Hartford landfill, the other is a privately-owned site in eastern Connecticut. Publicly-owned capacity is essential to keeping disposal fees reasonable. That's why CRRA is trying to develop a new publicly-owned ash landfill in Franklin.
CRRA believes that DEP should facilitate beneficial ash reuse. In Japan and other foreign countries, as much as 50 percent of ash produced by WTE facilities is used for purposes such as road construction, concrete and brownfields reclamation. Putting ash to work extends the life of ash landfills. The University Ash Consortium is working on ways to safely reuse this material.
IDENTIFYING POTENTIAL NEW LANDFILL SITES IN CONNECTICUT
Further, there is some waste – bulky items such as old furniture and rolls of carpeting, and construction and demolition debris – that cannot be processed by trash-to-energy plants and thus must be disposed of in landfills. Only one major solid waste landfill is still open in Connecticut, and that one will be full in a few years.
In 2004, CRRA began an exhaustive study of the entire state, looking to identify potential sites for one or more new landfills for disposal of solid waste, process residue, bulky and non-processible waste and ash residue. That study led to CRRA's efforts to site an ash landfill in Franklin.
UPDATING FACILITIES & TECHNOLOGY
CRRA is exploring other alternatives as well:
- Expanding existing trash-to-energy plants or building a new plant.
- Developing intermodal transportation facilities for shipping of waste and ash to out-of-state disposal sites.
- Developing new technologies.