Frequently Asked Questions



 

  • 1. General
  • 2. FIBERIGHT
  • 3. History
  • 4. Contracts
  • 5. Environmental
  • 6. Post 2018
  • 7. PERC
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  • 1. Why was the MRC formed?
     

    The MRC was formed in 1991 to work with the PERC partnership to improve facility operating and economic performance. Since then, the MRC has worked with the private owners of PERC to upgrade the facility, achieve a high level of environmental performance, and keep disposal costs down. Its only purpose is to serve the interests of its municipal members, many of whom it has served for over 25 years.

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  • 2. What impacts would this facility have on Hampden residents?
     

    As the projected cost of the facility is $80 million, this project will have a significant positive impact on the town’s commercial tax base.

    This project is being designed to have very minimal impact on Hampden residents by conforming to the town’s comprehensive vision for planned land use in and around the project location. The biggest change will be increased truck traffic on the short portion of the Cold Brook Road between where the access road will be built and Interstate 95. Additionally, Fiberight is planning to put in place a comprehensive plan to be a responsible neighbor by mitigating off site impact of the facility’s operations, which includes an innovative system that prevents odors from migrating off site. The nature of this operation and its distance from neighbors should make this very manageable.

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  • 3. What is the major change coming in 2018? Why are things changing?
     

    On March 31, 2018, the Waste Disposal Agreements between the MRC municipalities and the partnership that owns the PERC facility will terminate and municipalities that dispose of MSW under those agreements will need to make arrangements for what happens next with their trash.  The MRC has sponsored the development of a new MSW processing facility in Hampden that will be available as of April 1, 2018. As of this time, 105 municipalities, known as Joining members, have entered into agreements with the MRC to send their MSW to the facility in Hampden starting on April 1, 2018.

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  • 4. Who is the MRC?
     

    The MRC, which stands for Municipal Review Committee, Inc., is a non-profit corporation dedicated to ensuring the affordable, environmentally sound disposal of municipal solid waste (MSW) in the long-term. It is currently comprised of the 187 municipalities and inter-municipal entities that send their MSW to the PERC waste-to-energy facility in Orrington, Maine. Starting in 2018, 104 Joining Members of the MRC will send their MSW to a new facility in Hampden being developed by a private company called Fiberight, LLC.

    Our nine member volunteer board is elected by the membership and is made up of municipal officials and experienced individuals with extensive knowledge of the MSW industry. Our decisions are made in public meetings. We have been proactive about ensuring that our members will have an affordable and long-term solution to MSW disposal. We recognize that if we collaborate we all are in a better position to address the waste handling needs of the region.

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  • 5. What did MRC recommend to Charter Municipalities to manage their MSW after the waste disposal agreements with PERC terminate in 2018?
     

    The MRC recommended that Charter Municipalities manage their MSW through a three-part system that includes the following components: (1) continuation of local efforts for waste reduction and recycling and for control of waste collection and transportation; (2) use of the Fiberight facility, being developed in Hampden, Maine, for processing of mixed acceptable waste to recover recyclables and to convert organic materials into bio-methane and other high-value products; and (3) use of the Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewick, Maine, as a disposal facility for residual materials from the Fiberight facility and for management of acceptable waste and materials that the Fiberight facility cannot accept for any reason. In the view of the MRC, we recommended a system to achieve a long-term, affordable, environmentally sound method for managing solid waste starting in 2018.

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  • 6. What will be the MRC’s role in the new facility?
     

    MRC will purchase the land on which the facility will be constructed, will lease the property to Fiberight on a long-term basis and will have all the rights of a landlord over its tenant consistent with the terms of the Site Lease.

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  • 7. Is there any difference in the material composition in what we send to PERC versus what we would send to Fiberight?
     

    No, just as with PERC, Joining Members are precluded by contract from delivering Unacceptable Waste to the Fiberight facility. Joining Members that make such deliveries despite the contractual prohibition will be required to pay the cost of removing and of providing an appropriate manner for disposal of such materials. Again, this type of contractual provision is standard in the waste industry and is substantially the same as that included in the current PERC contracts.

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  • 8. What type of material will this facility recycle and process?
     

    The facility will handle municipal solid waste (MSW) from MRC member communities and, potentially, other cities and towns in Maine if capacity is available. It will not receive any out‐of‐state waste for processing.

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  • 9. Will out-of-state trash be used at the Fiberight/Covanta facility to fulfill volume?
     

    No. It is not allowed per contracted language in the master waste supply agreement and the site lease. In addition, the Maine DEP permit does not allow for out-of-state deliveries.

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  • 10. What is my town’s current tipping fee?
     

    The tipping fee at PERC changes each quarter. Click HERE to review information on recent tipping fees.

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  • 11. Where does the gas go after produced at the Hampden facility?
     

    The biogas will be sold to local purchasers and will be delivered into the Bangor Gas natural gas distribution system. In fact, one reason the proposed facility in Hampden is attractive is because Bangor Gas has a natural gas distribution line adjacent to the site.

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  • 12. Why do we need to sign-up before June 30, 2016?
     

    In order for the Fiberight facility to be constructed, performance tested and operational in 2018, the MRC needed commitments from municipalities by June 30, 2016. The short construction season in Maine requires that preparations to begin in 2016. In order for this to happen MRC communities must have collectively made sufficient waste commitments to meet the minimum waste processing requirements set forth in the contracts. This will allow the necessary financial close, permitting and construction to take place such that the new facility can be operational by April 1, 2018.

    The MRC has entered into a back-up agreement with Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewock which will allow MSW from MRC member communities to be delivered to that facility should the new Fiberight Facility not be ready in time.

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  • 13. Do we have to send our MSW to the Crossroads Landfill if Fiberight is not operational?
     

    Yes. Joining Members will be obligated to send their MSW to the Crossroads Landfill in the event that the Fiberight facility is not open.

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  • 14. How can I receive updates from the MRC?
     

    You can sign-up for e-mail updates from the MRC here. We will not share your e-mail address.

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  • 1. Why did MRC recommend that its members move forward with Fiberight?
     

    In 2007, the MRC began to focus on the post-2018 period in light of the fact that the  waste disposal agreements with MRC member municipalities  end in 2018. Initially, the MRC discussed with the PERC private partners  extension of PERC waste disposal agreements beyond 2018. After several years of joint investigation and evaluation, the MRC and the private partners were unable to reach agreement on the terms of an extension. Thereafter, the MRC proceeded to evaluate alternatives to the PERC facility on its own through a public competitive process.

    In 2013, the MRC released a Request for Expressions of Interest (the RFEI), which solicited responses from vendors of emerging technologies to process municipal solid waste via retrofit or re-development of an existing RDF combustion and electric generation facility. The MRC received 15 vendor responses to the RFEI, of which the response from Fiberight was selected as most advantageous.

    The MRC also began to search for a site for a new waste processing facility. The MRC began with a comprehensive process to identify available industrial sites and properties within a reasonable radial distance of the geographical center of the MRC service territory, which is near Bangor. Ultimately, the MRC identified the site in Hampden as consistent with its threshold and preferential criteria for site selection and proceeded with arrangements for the development of that site.

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  • 2. How many responses did MRC review before selecting Fiberight as the preferred facility developer?
     

    The MRC received 15 responses to its RFEI for post-2018 services and spent considerable time researching the options and conducting site visits. The Fiberight proposal was accepted as the one that best suited for the collective needs of the MRC membership.

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  • 3. What did MRC recommend to Charter Municipalities to manage their MSW after the waste disposal agreements with PERC terminate in 2018?
     

    The MRC recommended that Charter Municipalities manage their MSW through a three-part system that includes the following components: (1) continuation of local efforts for waste reduction and recycling and for control of waste collection and transportation; (2) use of the Fiberight facility, being developed in Hampden, Maine, for processing of mixed acceptable waste to recover recyclables and to convert organic materials into bio-methane and other high-value products; and (3) use of the Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewick, Maine, as a disposal facility for residual materials from the Fiberight facility and for management of acceptable waste and materials that the Fiberight facility cannot accept for any reason. In the view of the MRC, we recommended a system to achieve a long-term, affordable, environmentally sound method for managing solid waste starting in 2018.

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  • 4. Why did the MRC select Fiberight?
     

    Fiberight has many advantages compared with other alternatives reviewed by the MRC. Of particular note are the following:

    • The Fiberight facility can convert organic wastes into high-value products without needing a new region-wide system to collect organic materials separately from other wastes. While there are precedents for source-separated collection in urban areas, instituting a broad new and duplicative system for separate collection and transportation of organic wastes in rural Maine would be expensive and burdensome and would pose major implementation challenges, thereby undermining the goals of the MRC to ensure a long-term affordable and environmentally sound system of MSW disposal. The Fiberight facility will convert organics to high-value products while avoiding the need for such a broad new duplicative collection and transportation system.
    • The Fiberight facility uses a proprietary system for pulping waste prior to recovery of recyclable materials that avoids contamination issues associated with conventional mixed-waste processing facilities. Recovered materials will be clean with little contamination in line with Maine’s tradition and reputation for producing high-quality recyclable materials.
    • As a regional facility, the Fiberight facility offers the capability to make use of technologies, market opportunities and environmental control measures at a scale that is not available or feasible for use by individual municipalities or groups of municipalities in the MRC service territory. If the towns work together through the MRC, they can accomplish far more than if each town were to pursue an individual solution. Likewise, the more towns join together, the more successful the project will be.

    The MRC selected Fiberight over other vendors that responded to the Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for reasons that included:

    • experience with the technology at the demonstration project in Lawrenceville, Virginia;
    • willingness to finance, own and operate the facility rather than having the MRC or its member municipalities take on debt to construct the facility and arrange for operation thereafter;
    • use of the wet pulping process, which offers the opportunity to recover high-quality recyclable materials using technology with which there is experience in Maine in other applications, and with a minimum of manual picking;
    • the use of the sugar platform, which provides opportunities to produce a variety of products that include bio-methane and precursors to production of industrial sugars and/or ethanol, with prospects for a high level of diversion and a low level of residuals requiring landfill disposal; and
    • interest, willingness and capability to facilitate major capital investment in a commercial facility in Maine. Concentration on production of bio-gas makes the project  positioned to achieve financing while retaining the flexibility to convert to production of other byproducts if markets dictate. This flexibility is a significant advantage of the Fiberight plan.
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  • 5. Who will be the owners of the facility?
     

    The facility will be privately owned by Fiberight and its investors.  One of the investors will be Covanta, which is a world leader in sustainable waste processing and energy production ( https://www.covanta.com/).

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  • 6. Who is paying to build the Fiberight facility?
     

    Fiberight and its partners will pay for the Hampden facility without any public investment. The MRC will purchase the land and pay for road construction and utility access.

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  • 7. What is the Fiberight process?
     

    The Fiberight business model involves front-end processing equipment that recovers recyclable materials and converts organic materials to biofuels.. While strides have been made to increase recycling, there are still a number of recyclables that remain in household MSW even after diversion by local recycling programs. We expect that the Fiberight’s capture rate for recovering materials will have a large impact on the ability of our communities to meet the State of Maine’s recycling rate, which has stayed stagnant for over 20 years despite repeated efforts to raise it. Following the capture of recyclables, Fiberight capitalizes on the organic material that makes up approximately 40% of MSW. Through a proprietary accelerated anaerobic digestion process, Fiberight converts the MSW to biofuel. Approximately 20% of incoming material will be residuals that will be sent to the Crossroads Landfill for disposal.

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  • 8. Is there any difference in the material composition in what we send to PERC versus what we would send to Fiberight?
     

    No, just as with PERC, Joining Members are precluded by contract from delivering Unacceptable Waste to the Fiberight facility. Joining Members that make such deliveries despite the contractual prohibition will be required to pay the cost of removing and of providing an appropriate manner for disposal of such materials. Again, this type of contractual provision is standard in the waste industry and is substantially the same as that included in the current PERC contracts.

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  • 9. What type of material will this facility recycle and process?
     

    The facility will handle municipal solid waste (MSW) from MRC member communities and, potentially, other cities and towns in Maine if capacity is available. It will not receive any out‐of‐state waste for processing.

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  • 10. What technology will the Fiberight facility utilize?
     

    The Fiberight process is based on European MBT (Mechanical Biological Treatment) plants that separate and recover recyclables from organic material. There are currently over 330 MBT plants in Europe, with a total of 450 expected by 2020. Collectively these plants process over 34 million tons of waste per year. For reference, PERC processes 300,000 tons per year, and the entire US waste to energy sector processes 29 million tons per year.

    Fiberight has operated and continues to operate an integrated demonstration facility in Lawrenceville, Virgina, where it tested its technology. MBT projects are now being constructed in the USA, for example Entsorga West Virginia (120,000 TPY), and Zero Waste in Sam Jose, California). Several large private projects have also been announced with major US waste companies, including of course the Fiberight/Covanta project.

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  • 11. What due diligence has been completed that demonstrates that the Fiberight process is scalable to meet the needs of the MRC communities?
     

    The proposed Fiberight facility in Hampden would be the first of its kind at its scale in the United States and has the potential to positively transform the solid waste industry in our state, regionally, and nationally. The Fiberight facility reflects an approach to processing that involves a combination of both very well proven and emerging technology. Similar facilities have been implemented in Europe, Asia and Canada with various levels of government support and tipping fees.

    The Hampden facility would involve scale-up of the technology demonstrated in the facility in Lawrenceville, Virginia. MRC representatives have visited the Virginia facility, have reviewed the basis for design and operations in detail, and the technology has been peer reviewed by the University of Maine whose report was positive on some of the issues that we had concerns about, like scale up potential. Their Peer Review Report specifically addressed the differences in the climates between Maine and Virginia. Fiberight has submitted applications to the Maine DEP for solid waste and air emissions licenses for the Hampden facility, which are now undergoing a stringent review process.

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  • 12. How many tons of trash will be needed for the Fiberight/Covanta facility to operate?
     

    100,000 is the minimum threshold reviewed by the MRC. The review confirmed that the Fiberight plant, constructed to accept 100,000 MSW tons per year, would generate positive cash flows and a positive return on investment. One key aspect of the Fiberight process that attracted the MRC from the start is its ability to scale its operations to suit the size of the municipal group that ends up remaining committed to solving problems by sticking together and leveraging our strength to keep pricing affordable for taxpayers.  This approach has worked well for years and will continue to do so after 2018.

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  • 13. How many jobs are projected for the Fiberight/Covanta facility?
     

    Fiberight founder and CEO, Craig Stuart-Paul, reports that the facility will employ approximately 65 people. Many of the jobs will be technical in nature and have above average pay scales.

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  • 14. What is the proposed tipping fee for the Fiberight/Covanta facility?
     

    $70/ ton is the base tipping fee and will be adjusted annually based on the Consumer Price Index. If the project is successful, there is the prospect of lower net tipping fees after taking into account possible rebates back to the MRC communities under a rebate program based on overall plant revenues from tipping fees and product sales.

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  • 15. How many years is the proposed Fiberight/Covanta facility tipping fee for?
     

    The tipping fee would be in place over a 40-year horizon.

    The base fee of $70/ton is for an initial contract term of 15 years. Joining Members have the option of terminating the contract at the end of the 15 year period or contract for up to five additional 5-year extensions.

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  • 16. Where does the gas go after produced at the Hampden facility?
     

    The biogas will be sold to local purchasers and will be delivered into the Bangor Gas natural gas distribution system. In fact, one reason the proposed facility in Hampden is attractive is because Bangor Gas has a natural gas distribution line adjacent to the site.

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  • 17. What will happen if Fiberight does not open by April 1, 2018?
     

    Fiberight is obligated to accept and process MSW as soon as it is able to do so even if the facility has not been fully completed.

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  • 18. Why do we need to sign-up before June 30, 2016?
     

    In order for the Fiberight facility to be constructed, performance tested and operational in 2018, the MRC needed commitments from municipalities by June 30, 2016. The short construction season in Maine requires that preparations to begin in 2016. In order for this to happen MRC communities must have collectively made sufficient waste commitments to meet the minimum waste processing requirements set forth in the contracts. This will allow the necessary financial close, permitting and construction to take place such that the new facility can be operational by April 1, 2018.

    The MRC has entered into a back-up agreement with Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewock which will allow MSW from MRC member communities to be delivered to that facility should the new Fiberight Facility not be ready in time.

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  • 19. I'm a commercial hauler and want to deliver MSW to Fiberight. Who do I contact at Fiberight to sign-up?
     

    Fiberight is working with commercial haulers right now regarding arrangements for 2018 and beyond. If your hauler has questions, please have them contact Fiberight at 1 (800) 728-9886 or craigsp@fiberight.com.

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  • 1. How involved has MRC been in the financial and operational oversight of PERC?
     

    The MRC has been very involved. Involvement has included approval of every annual operating budget, as well as major maintenance and capital expenses.  MRC receives detailed monthly financial reports, examines every tip fee and is involved in quarterly meetings with PERC leadership and ownership partners.

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  • 2. What is the major change coming in 2018? Why are things changing?
     

    On March 31, 2018, the Waste Disposal Agreements between the MRC municipalities and the partnership that owns the PERC facility will terminate and municipalities that dispose of MSW under those agreements will need to make arrangements for what happens next with their trash.  The MRC has sponsored the development of a new MSW processing facility in Hampden that will be available as of April 1, 2018. As of this time, 105 municipalities, known as Joining members, have entered into agreements with the MRC to send their MSW to the facility in Hampden starting on April 1, 2018.

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  • 3. Why did MRC recommend that its members move forward with Fiberight?
     

    In 2007, the MRC began to focus on the post-2018 period in light of the fact that the  waste disposal agreements with MRC member municipalities  end in 2018. Initially, the MRC discussed with the PERC private partners  extension of PERC waste disposal agreements beyond 2018. After several years of joint investigation and evaluation, the MRC and the private partners were unable to reach agreement on the terms of an extension. Thereafter, the MRC proceeded to evaluate alternatives to the PERC facility on its own through a public competitive process.

    In 2013, the MRC released a Request for Expressions of Interest (the RFEI), which solicited responses from vendors of emerging technologies to process municipal solid waste via retrofit or re-development of an existing RDF combustion and electric generation facility. The MRC received 15 vendor responses to the RFEI, of which the response from Fiberight was selected as most advantageous.

    The MRC also began to search for a site for a new waste processing facility. The MRC began with a comprehensive process to identify available industrial sites and properties within a reasonable radial distance of the geographical center of the MRC service territory, which is near Bangor. Ultimately, the MRC identified the site in Hampden as consistent with its threshold and preferential criteria for site selection and proceeded with arrangements for the development of that site.

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  • 4. How many responses did MRC review before selecting Fiberight as the preferred facility developer?
     

    The MRC received 15 responses to its RFEI for post-2018 services and spent considerable time researching the options and conducting site visits. The Fiberight proposal was accepted as the one that best suited for the collective needs of the MRC membership.

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    Viewed 31 Times
  • 5. Why did the MRC select Fiberight?
     

    Fiberight has many advantages compared with other alternatives reviewed by the MRC. Of particular note are the following:

    • The Fiberight facility can convert organic wastes into high-value products without needing a new region-wide system to collect organic materials separately from other wastes. While there are precedents for source-separated collection in urban areas, instituting a broad new and duplicative system for separate collection and transportation of organic wastes in rural Maine would be expensive and burdensome and would pose major implementation challenges, thereby undermining the goals of the MRC to ensure a long-term affordable and environmentally sound system of MSW disposal. The Fiberight facility will convert organics to high-value products while avoiding the need for such a broad new duplicative collection and transportation system.
    • The Fiberight facility uses a proprietary system for pulping waste prior to recovery of recyclable materials that avoids contamination issues associated with conventional mixed-waste processing facilities. Recovered materials will be clean with little contamination in line with Maine’s tradition and reputation for producing high-quality recyclable materials.
    • As a regional facility, the Fiberight facility offers the capability to make use of technologies, market opportunities and environmental control measures at a scale that is not available or feasible for use by individual municipalities or groups of municipalities in the MRC service territory. If the towns work together through the MRC, they can accomplish far more than if each town were to pursue an individual solution. Likewise, the more towns join together, the more successful the project will be.

    The MRC selected Fiberight over other vendors that responded to the Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for reasons that included:

    • experience with the technology at the demonstration project in Lawrenceville, Virginia;
    • willingness to finance, own and operate the facility rather than having the MRC or its member municipalities take on debt to construct the facility and arrange for operation thereafter;
    • use of the wet pulping process, which offers the opportunity to recover high-quality recyclable materials using technology with which there is experience in Maine in other applications, and with a minimum of manual picking;
    • the use of the sugar platform, which provides opportunities to produce a variety of products that include bio-methane and precursors to production of industrial sugars and/or ethanol, with prospects for a high level of diversion and a low level of residuals requiring landfill disposal; and
    • interest, willingness and capability to facilitate major capital investment in a commercial facility in Maine. Concentration on production of bio-gas makes the project  positioned to achieve financing while retaining the flexibility to convert to production of other byproducts if markets dictate. This flexibility is a significant advantage of the Fiberight plan.
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  • 1. Why is the MRC buying land and not Fiberight?
     

    By purchasing the site for the benefit of the Equity Charter Municipalities that elect to stay together, the MRC can assure its ability to exercise oversight over the Fiberight facility in its capacity as a landlord rather than as a limited partner. Moreover, as owner of the site, the MRC would control the site and potentially could make it available for redevelopment as a, conventional single-stream processing facility, source-separated organics processing facility, or other facility that might serve the waste management needs of the region if the Fiberight facility fails to perform as anticipated.

    The MRC chose to accept the responsibility for site acquisition and development for a variety of reasons. As site-owner and landlord, the MRC gains leverage and control in its agreements with Fiberight that enables it to continue to represent the interests of its member municipalities throughout the development process. By controlling the site, the MRC is positioned to protect the needs of its member municipalities in the event of default and termination scenarios, and to control the re-development of the site for an alternative facility in the event the Fiberight process is unsuccessful.

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  • 2. Is there any difference in the material composition in what we send to PERC versus what we would send to Fiberight?
     

    No, just as with PERC, Joining Members are precluded by contract from delivering Unacceptable Waste to the Fiberight facility. Joining Members that make such deliveries despite the contractual prohibition will be required to pay the cost of removing and of providing an appropriate manner for disposal of such materials. Again, this type of contractual provision is standard in the waste industry and is substantially the same as that included in the current PERC contracts.

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  • 3. How many tons of trash will be needed for the Fiberight/Covanta facility to operate?
     

    100,000 is the minimum threshold reviewed by the MRC. The review confirmed that the Fiberight plant, constructed to accept 100,000 MSW tons per year, would generate positive cash flows and a positive return on investment. One key aspect of the Fiberight process that attracted the MRC from the start is its ability to scale its operations to suit the size of the municipal group that ends up remaining committed to solving problems by sticking together and leveraging our strength to keep pricing affordable for taxpayers.  This approach has worked well for years and will continue to do so after 2018.

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  • 4. What is the proposed tipping fee for the Fiberight/Covanta facility?
     

    $70/ ton is the base tipping fee and will be adjusted annually based on the Consumer Price Index. If the project is successful, there is the prospect of lower net tipping fees after taking into account possible rebates back to the MRC communities under a rebate program based on overall plant revenues from tipping fees and product sales.

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  • 5. How many years is the proposed Fiberight/Covanta facility tipping fee for?
     

    The tipping fee would be in place over a 40-year horizon.

    The base fee of $70/ton is for an initial contract term of 15 years. Joining Members have the option of terminating the contract at the end of the 15 year period or contract for up to five additional 5-year extensions.

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  • 6. What protections exist to protect unexpected tipping fee increases?
     

    Contract language in the Joinder Agreement and the Master Waste Supply Agreement protects Joining Members from increased tip fees or additional capital contributions beyond those identified in the original agreements. The contract language prevents Fiberight from requiring the Joining Members to become a funding source in the event the Fiberight technology fails to perform as intended. If Fiberight cannot meet its contractual obligations, the MRC can place Fiberight in default, and, if the problem is not cured, can terminate the site lease and force Fiberight to leave the site. MSW would be sent to the Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewock until a substitute processing facility or strategy could be developed and implemented. For more information please review this memo.

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  • 7. If my town chooses to send its recyclables to Fiberight, will the recycling tonnage help satisfy 100,000 tonnage and delivery requirement?
     

    No. The delivery requirement includes deliveries of acceptable waste, but does not include recyclables that have been source separated prior to delivery to the Fiberight facility. Most joining members determine their Estimated Delivery Amounts on the basis of the amount of acceptable waste they expect to deliver to the Fiberight facility on an annual basis, and not to include materials that would be diverted from that waste stream prior to delivery through waste reduction and recycling programs.

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  • 8. What if my town wants to change its recycling program after 2018? Will I be penalized because the tonnage is lower than what was provided in the estimated tonnage that was provided to the MRC?
     

    No. One of the benefits of the Fiberight process is that it lends itself to recycling and local control. The contract terms that the MRC negotiated with Fiberight specifically allow towns to continue or expand their existing waste reduction and recycling programs. The Fiberight facility is being designed with the understanding that many communities will choose this route. Towns that would like to continue or expand their existing recycling programs will be able to do so. The MRC agreements for the Fiberight facility will not impose requirements to deliver a Guaranteed Annual Tonnage (GAT) of MSW on individual towns, and towns will NOT be liable for penalties for failure to deliver any specific amount of MSW so long as they continue to deliver all MSW under their control to the Fiberight facility. Thus, towns can continue existing PAYT programs, or add new PAYT programs, without fear of being penalized individually for delivery shortfalls.

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  • 9. What will happen if Fiberight does not open by April 1, 2018?
     

    Fiberight is obligated to accept and process MSW as soon as it is able to do so even if the facility has not been fully completed.

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  • 10. Why do we need to sign-up before June 30, 2016?
     

    In order for the Fiberight facility to be constructed, performance tested and operational in 2018, the MRC needed commitments from municipalities by June 30, 2016. The short construction season in Maine requires that preparations to begin in 2016. In order for this to happen MRC communities must have collectively made sufficient waste commitments to meet the minimum waste processing requirements set forth in the contracts. This will allow the necessary financial close, permitting and construction to take place such that the new facility can be operational by April 1, 2018.

    The MRC has entered into a back-up agreement with Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewock which will allow MSW from MRC member communities to be delivered to that facility should the new Fiberight Facility not be ready in time.

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  • 11. Who pays for the transportation to Crossroads Landfill if there is a delay in opening of the Fiberight facility?
     

    In the event that the Fiberight facility in Hampden is up and running and needs to bypass the MSW to the Crossroads Landfill, Fiberight will pay for the transportation costs. If the Fiberight facility does not start on time as a result of excused delays (such as permitting delays by the Maine DEP, or delays in MRC acquisition of the property) , , Joining Members will pay for the transportation costs.

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  • 12. Do we have to send our MSW to the Crossroads Landfill if Fiberight is not operational?
     

    Yes. Joining Members will be obligated to send their MSW to the Crossroads Landfill in the event that the Fiberight facility is not open.

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  • 13. How will rebates be calculated?
     

    Rebates will be calculated based on the revenue of Fiberight per the formula in Exhibit F to the Master Waste Supply Agreement. That formula accounts for the tip fees that Fiberight collects from MRC members and other entities that choose to send their waste to Fiberight. It also accounts forgross revenue from the sale of biogas and recovered recyclables and other products.

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  • 14. Is there a penalty if we did not sign up with the MRC/Fiberight Facility before June 30, 2016?
     

    MRC member municipalities that did not sign up before June 30, 2016 will be obligated to pay a surcharge of $2.21 per ton and will not be eligible for rebates during the first term (15 years). The MRC Board may consider waiving this surcharge in appropriate circumstances if a municipality can demonstrate good faith causes for the delay. The MRC will make accommodations for towns that have regularly scheduled town meetings and that are proceedingto place approval on the town meeting warrant for vote.

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  • 15. If a smaller facility is built and our town wants to sign-up in 2018 or later will we still be able to send our trash to Fiberight?
     

    Towns that sign-up with the MRC after June 30, 2016 will have to pay an extra $2.21 per ton to the MRC.

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  • 16. Does MRC really have enough committed tons when considering flow control?
     

    Yes. Municipalities may direct their waste under current state law. Interstate flow control is indeed disallowed by federal law, but there is no economic out-of-state alternative that makes sense for the service area.

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  • 1. What impacts would this facility have on Hampden residents?
     

    As the projected cost of the facility is $80 million, this project will have a significant positive impact on the town’s commercial tax base.

    This project is being designed to have very minimal impact on Hampden residents by conforming to the town’s comprehensive vision for planned land use in and around the project location. The biggest change will be increased truck traffic on the short portion of the Cold Brook Road between where the access road will be built and Interstate 95. Additionally, Fiberight is planning to put in place a comprehensive plan to be a responsible neighbor by mitigating off site impact of the facility’s operations, which includes an innovative system that prevents odors from migrating off site. The nature of this operation and its distance from neighbors should make this very manageable.

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  • 2. Why did the MRC select Fiberight?
     

    Fiberight has many advantages compared with other alternatives reviewed by the MRC. Of particular note are the following:

    • The Fiberight facility can convert organic wastes into high-value products without needing a new region-wide system to collect organic materials separately from other wastes. While there are precedents for source-separated collection in urban areas, instituting a broad new and duplicative system for separate collection and transportation of organic wastes in rural Maine would be expensive and burdensome and would pose major implementation challenges, thereby undermining the goals of the MRC to ensure a long-term affordable and environmentally sound system of MSW disposal. The Fiberight facility will convert organics to high-value products while avoiding the need for such a broad new duplicative collection and transportation system.
    • The Fiberight facility uses a proprietary system for pulping waste prior to recovery of recyclable materials that avoids contamination issues associated with conventional mixed-waste processing facilities. Recovered materials will be clean with little contamination in line with Maine’s tradition and reputation for producing high-quality recyclable materials.
    • As a regional facility, the Fiberight facility offers the capability to make use of technologies, market opportunities and environmental control measures at a scale that is not available or feasible for use by individual municipalities or groups of municipalities in the MRC service territory. If the towns work together through the MRC, they can accomplish far more than if each town were to pursue an individual solution. Likewise, the more towns join together, the more successful the project will be.

    The MRC selected Fiberight over other vendors that responded to the Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for reasons that included:

    • experience with the technology at the demonstration project in Lawrenceville, Virginia;
    • willingness to finance, own and operate the facility rather than having the MRC or its member municipalities take on debt to construct the facility and arrange for operation thereafter;
    • use of the wet pulping process, which offers the opportunity to recover high-quality recyclable materials using technology with which there is experience in Maine in other applications, and with a minimum of manual picking;
    • the use of the sugar platform, which provides opportunities to produce a variety of products that include bio-methane and precursors to production of industrial sugars and/or ethanol, with prospects for a high level of diversion and a low level of residuals requiring landfill disposal; and
    • interest, willingness and capability to facilitate major capital investment in a commercial facility in Maine. Concentration on production of bio-gas makes the project  positioned to achieve financing while retaining the flexibility to convert to production of other byproducts if markets dictate. This flexibility is a significant advantage of the Fiberight plan.
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  • 3. Will out-of-state trash be used at the Fiberight/Covanta facility to fulfill volume?
     

    No. It is not allowed per contracted language in the master waste supply agreement and the site lease. In addition, the Maine DEP permit does not allow for out-of-state deliveries.

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  • 1. If a smaller facility is built and our town wants to sign-up in 2018 or later will we still be able to send our trash to Fiberight?
     

    Towns that sign-up with the MRC after June 30, 2016 will have to pay an extra $2.21 per ton to the MRC.

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  • 2. Our town is a Departing Member of the MRC. When will the MRC return our shares of the Tip Fee Stabilization Fund?
     

    The MRC will return the shares of the Tip Fee Stabilization Fund to the Departing Members shortly after March 31, 2018, when the existing Waste Disposal Agreements have terminated and the final data for calculating the share due to each Equity Charter Municipality become available.

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  • 1. Who are the owners of PERC?
     

    PERC is a limited partnership. Its general partner, USA Energy, LLC, owns a 10% interest in its capacity as a general partner. MRC Equity Charter Municipalities collectively own 25.5214% of the limited partnership interests. The remaining limited partnership interests are split between USA Energy and PERC Holdings, LLC, a private investment entity based in Minnesota.

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  • 2. Does the MRC have an ownership share in PERC?
     

    No. The Equity Charter Municipalities collectively own 25.5214 % of the limited partner interests in PERC. The MRC manages those interests on behalf of the Equity Charter Municipalities.

    The PERC Partnership dissolves under its own terms in 2018. Until that time, the MRC will retain oversight rights on behalf of its membership, and the members will retain their interests.

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  • 3. How involved has MRC been in the financial and operational oversight of PERC?
     

    The MRC has been very involved. Involvement has included approval of every annual operating budget, as well as major maintenance and capital expenses.  MRC receives detailed monthly financial reports, examines every tip fee and is involved in quarterly meetings with PERC leadership and ownership partners.

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  • 4. How many tons of trash does PERC process now?
     

    Approximately 300,000 tons per year.

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  • 5. Does PERC use out of state trash?
     

    Yes. Currently the total volume of out of state trash is approximately 56,000 tons or about 18%

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  • 6. What is the major change coming in 2018? Why are things changing?
     

    On March 31, 2018, the Waste Disposal Agreements between the MRC municipalities and the partnership that owns the PERC facility will terminate and municipalities that dispose of MSW under those agreements will need to make arrangements for what happens next with their trash.  The MRC has sponsored the development of a new MSW processing facility in Hampden that will be available as of April 1, 2018. As of this time, 105 municipalities, known as Joining members, have entered into agreements with the MRC to send their MSW to the facility in Hampden starting on April 1, 2018.

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