In a letter to members of the Tulsa City Council, officials with the Walter B. Hall Resource Recovery Facility said effective July 1 the plant will remain open and operate in the competitive marketplace to provide trash disposal services to customers who value its environmental, commercial and competitive benefits, according to WBH Generating President Thomas Simpson.
“We hope the City of Tulsa will be among those customers who continue to take advantage of this valuable resource to keep the environment clean,” said Simpson. “The citizens of Tulsa have invested $180 million in this facility and now the City of Tulsa has an opportunity to utilize this valuable resource for years to come at a fraction of its historical cost.”
On July 1, the tipping fees at WBH will represent a significant discount from fees currently charged under the Tulsa Authority for the Recovery of Energy Service Agreement, which expires at the end of this month. According to Simpson, the new fees will be the lowest of any waste-to-energy facility in the nation and will also be at least $10 lower than the average national landfill rates.
“WBH believes that the City of Tulsa, as a market participant and under the express terms of TARE’s contract with Waste Management Inc., continues to have the freedom to direct its trash to WBH as it has for the last 20 years,” said Simpson. “No amendment of the current ordinance is necessary. The City may purchase disposal services from WBH on the spot market without a contract, just as haulers currently do at area landfills.”
Today’s announcement is in contrast to earlier reports that the facility will close on July 1.
“We believe the citizens and businesses of Tulsa are so heavily in favor of converting their trash to energy versus dumping it that the City Council will support our efforts to continue doing what’s right for the environment,” said Simpson. “In addition, thanks to our low fees and central location, we have received considerable interest from commercial customers regarding using our facility beginning July 1.”