Company wants to convert waste into energy in Port Arthur

Published 11:47 am Thursday, July 13, 2017

Port Arthur is known as Energy City. One company would like to make that Clean Energy City.

Impact Waste would like to start a business in the Port Arthur Business Park on West Port Arthur Road that turns waste into energy and the developers behind the project want $4 million from the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation to make it happen.

The total cost of the ambitious project is $11 million.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

On Monday, the EDC’s board of directors listened to a report on Aries Clean Energy pitch the project. Aries will partner with Impact Waste. Impact made their presentation at last month’s meeting.

“Aries Clean Energy provides a multi-patented technology that can handle waste in a turnkey gasification solution,” according to their website.

Tony Broussard with Impact said they’ve been looking for a place to convert waste into clean energy.

“There’s nothing like this in the state of Texas,” he said. “This will take Port Arthur far into the future.”

Broussard started Triangle Waste in 2003 at the business park. He said he built a $5 million facility there and sold the business.

He started eight other companies in the meantime before forming Impact in 2016. The facility handles household trash and transforms it to renewable energy.

“Our company is about recycling and not bringing anything to a landfill if it doesn’t need to be there,” he said. “When most people think of waste, they think of a landfill.”

Broussard said his employees were paid well and his companies take care of their employees.

Corporate offices for Impact will be in Port Arthur and situated on 36-acres site built with recycled material. The $5 million site will feature a tree buffer zone with water fountains.

“It will be a beautiful office complex. A state of the art shop. A recyclery second to none that will recycle everything, hands down. We can build it with markets to sell to,” he said.

Water waste, furthermore, would go through a de-watering system and then used for compost. Broussard said the system would be self-sufficient and have an irrigation system with clean water.

“There’s nothing built like this in the entire United States,” he said. “The trees in construction will be turned into mulch, dyed and sold to market into Grade A compost. Everything is enclosed. Nothing is opened to the environment.”

The facility can also turn sheetrock back into gypsum as fertilizer to use in lakes or in compost. It can even make compost glass. Wood chips to tires can also be recycled.

For instance, Aries can take tires and recycle them at their Tennessee facility. “Everyone knows that’s a big problem across the U.S. Tires can be used from playgrounds to football fields,” Broussard said. “It takes in wastewater, sludge and mulch.”

He added that’s there’s growth and opportunity with the company.

“That’s why we’re asking for 36 acres. Our facility in Lake Charles is asking us ways to get rid of trash, Firestone and Goodyear are asking. They do not want to put anything in a landfill,” he said. “They’re so excited about the whole process. They can’t wait until we get started. The opportunities are endless.”

Broussard said the Aries plant in Tennessee was completed in October and Impact can do it here and in other areas.

He added that Port Arthur is where he started and where his heart is and built in the Industrial Park.

“This will bring notoriety to Port Arthur,” Broussard said.

Broussard said another plus is the revenue created by the project and job creation for drivers and laborers.

Jeffrey Snyder with Aries said they’ve built 13 gasification facilities in seven years.

“It’s not like the technology is something that has not been done before. Wood waste, tires and wastewater sludge is converted into energy.”

Director Richard Wycoff said this is the first time he heard of a process to handle tires regionally.

“This will benefit the city by creating revenue,” Wycoff said. “We need more help to fix our streets and parks. I’m also concerned about the waste at refineries.”

Directors David Stickley, Kenneth Marks and Wycoff toured the Aries facility in Lebanon, Tennessee and they think the facility will be a benefit for the region for years into the future.

In other news, Floyd Batiste, executive director of the PAEDC, requested an 8 percent raise in salary and an increase in nine months severance pay. The board gave him a 3.5 percent raise instead but he did get the nine months severance pay.

Lastly, a lease agreement with Collins Engineering, Inc. was approved.

Collins requested space at the 501 Procter St. building where the PAEDC and the Greater Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce are housed.

The term is for three years with an option to renew for two years. The space is 402 square feet.

The fixed base monthly rental fee for the first three lease years is $442.20 per month.

Likewise, G&G Enterprises Construction Corporation’s lease agreement at the same location was approved.

The term will be five years and the space is 1,049 square feet. The fixed base monthly rental for the first five leas years will be $1,153.90 per month.