Every day, 100 tons of food destined for landfill will be converted into energy.

CleanWorld's Sacramento anaerobic digester is producing renewable compressed natural gas to fuel regional commercial and public fleets. Located at the Sacramento South Area Transfer Station in Sacramento County, the biorefinery will be able to consume up 100 tons of food waste a day – nearly 40,000 tons per year. Organic waste collected from local restaurants, supermarkets and food-processing companies is converted through anaerobic digester technology – a biological process – into natural gas, electricity and fertilizer. The renewable gas produced is used to power waste disposal vehicles, school buses and fleet vehicles throughout the Sacramento region.

CleanWorld's BioDigester is a thermophilic, high-rate, high-solid digestion system, with a three-stage design created through a public-private collaborative with the University of California, Davis (UCD) and the Energy Commission. Pioneered and developed by UCD professor, Dr. Ruihong Zhang, the cutting-edge technology expanded its generating capacity from 25 to 100 tons per day by leveraging both the Energy Commission's Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program funds and more than $7.3 million from private investment.

See more information about CleanWorld Sacramento BioDigester.

CleanWorld Sacramento BioDigester CleanWorld Sacramento BioDigester CleanWorld Sacramento BioDigester array

Photos courtesy of CleanWorld



  • Twenty short-term jobs were created to construct and assemble equipment in Marysville in Yuba County.

  • Six long-term operating jobs were created.

  • Renewable natural gas to replace 700,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually is being produced – approximately 2,000 gallons per day, every day.

  • Offsets 18,250 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions annually from the waste processed.

  • Generation of 3.17 million kilowatt hours of electricity every year – enough to power nearly 400 average California homes for a year.

  • One hundred tons a day of food waste will be kept out of local landfills once the capacity expansion project is completed.

Type of Project

Anaerobic digester biorefinery

Key Developers and Partners

  • CleanWorld
  • Atlas Disposal
  • California Energy Commission
  • University of California, Davis


As of 2015, the initial construction phase is completed and the facility has been operating since the end of 2012. An expansion project to the facility has begun.


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