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Landfill Methane Outreach Program


What is LMOP?

The U.S. EPA's Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP) is a voluntary assistance program that helps to reduce methane emissions from landfills by encouraging the recovery and use of landfill gas (LFG) as an energy resource. LMOP forms partnerships and agreements with communities, landfill owners, utilities, power marketers, states, the LFG industry, tribes, nonprofit organizations, and trade associations to overcome barriers to project development by helping them assess project feasibility, find financing, and market the benefits of project development to the community.

Why is LMOP promoting the use of landfill gas?

Using LFG is a win/win opportunity. LFG utilization projects involve citizens in sustainable community planning and create partnerships. Plus these projects go hand-in-hand with community commitments to cleaner air, improved public welfare and safety, and reductions in greenhouse (global warming) gases. By linking communities with innovative ways to deal with their LFG, LMOP contributes to the creation of livable communities that enjoy increased environmental protection, better waste management, and responsible community planning.

Why was LMOP created?

Municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills are the third-largest source of methane emissions in the United States generated by human activity, accounting for approximately 18.2 percent of these emissions in 2014. At the same time, methane emissions from landfills represent a lost opportunity to capture and use a significant energy resource. EPA launched LMOP to encourage productive use of this resource as part of the United States' commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Who participates in LMOP?

LMOP participants include LMOP Industry Partners, such as LFG energy project developers, equipment suppliers, financiers, and end users; LMOP State Partners, who provide permitting, incentive program, and regulatory guidance; LMOP Energy Partners, who include energy service providers who are interested in LFG energy projects (utilities do not have to currently be involved in a project to participate in the program); LMOP Community Partners, who include communities and landfill owner/operators; and LMOP Endorsers, nonprofit organizations coordinating with EPA to promote LFG among their members or constituents.

What kind of project services does LMOP provide?

LMOP provides technical, informational, and marketing services, such as:

  • Technical assistance, guidance materials, and software to assess a potential project's economic feasibility.
  • Assistance in creating partnerships and locating financing for projects.
  • Informational materials to help educate the community and the local media about the benefits of LFG.
  • Networking opportunities with peers and LFG experts to allow communities to share challenges and successes.

Does EPA regulate landfill gas?

The U.S. EPA regulates LFG under the New Source Performance Standards and Emissions Guidelines for MSW landfills. These regulations target emissions of nonmethane organic compounds, requiring owners/operators of larger landfills to collect and combust their LFG. Under the new regulations, landfill owner/operators can either flare or capture and use the LFG as a renewable energy resource. For rule and implementation information for standards of performance for MSW landfills, visit the EPA's Technology Transfer Network Air Toxics website.

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