Waste Management awards first annual $100,000 "Think Green™" prize to bioga & electric, LLC
Waste Management’s prize in the 2010 Rice University Business Plan Competition prize will fund development of a new air quality system for renewable energy facilities
HOUSTON, May 4, 2010 – Waste Management, Inc., (NYSE: WM) North America’s largest waste and environmental services company, has awarded its first annual Think Green® prize in the 2010 Rice University Business Plan Competition to Biogas & Electric, LLC, a California-based startup. The Think Green® investment prize is designed to spur new approaches in the clean technology, recycling and renewable energy sectors.
Biogas & Electric, LLC has developed technology to significantly reduce emissions of nitrous oxide (NOx) generated during the combustion of methane-rich biogas from anaerobic digestion facilities. Improving the emissions of turbines or engines powered by biogas can help these systems generate more renewable energy while enhancing local air quality.
“In our first year at the 2010 Rice University Business Plan Competition, we saw young entrepreneurs developing some great technologies to solve pressing issues in energy and the environment,” said Carl Rush, senior vice president, Organic Growth Group for Waste Management. “As part of our ongoing investments in cleantech companies, we designed the Think Green® award to help them sharpen their
business plans and take these systems out into the real world.”
Anaerobic digestion systems harness naturally occurring microorganisms to break down organic waste and generate biogas, which, much like natural gas, can be used to generate electricity. Biogas & Electric designed its technology to complement systems on dairies, farms and sewage treatment plants where organic waste products can generate clean, renewable biogas. The company’s market-ready system meets a clear demand for emissions control technology to remove NOx, which can contribute to local air quality issues such as smog.
The Rice University Business Plan Competition is the world’s largest and most lucrative graduate-level business plan competition. Organized by the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship, the competition provides funding and guidance for young entrepreneurs working to commercialize promising technologies. The Rice Alliance has helped launch more than 250 startups, which have collectively raised more than $500 million in early-stage capital.
Waste Management expects to continue its support for the Think Green® award in the years to come. This program, which contributes to the company’s leadership in the Houston area business community, is part of its ongoing sustainability program to invest in emerging technologies for managing waste.
About Waste Management
Waste Management, based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. Our subsidiaries provide collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal services. We are also a leading developer, operator and owner of wasteto-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States. Our customers include residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers throughout North America. To learn more visit www.wm.com or www.thinkgreen.com.