The Air Pollution Control District (APCD) announced plans to examine the feasibility of converting Santa Barbara’s trash to energy or fuel; specifically, the APCD will study trash-to-gas facilities in Arkansas, Idaho, and Ohio. The Arkansas and Idaho facilities produce ethanol and electricity, respectively, via gasification of waste materials; the Ohio plant converts “cellulosic materials” such as paper and wood to ethanol via fermentation. The APCD, armed with a $400,000 state grant, will test what pollutants are released when samples of Santa Barbara’s waste are subjected to these processes.

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