IRVINE, Calif. — Landfills in the state are required to burn gases produced by decomposing trash. Some landfills flare or destroy the gas, but Orange County Waste and Recycling is taking landfill gases from trash and turning it into electricity.  

In 2021, the agency said the landfill in Irvine produced about 154,000 megawatt hours of energy and the landfill in Brea produced about 210,000 megawatt hours, for about a combined total amount of energy to provide electricity to about 50,000 homes.  

You’ll hear from the executive director of the agency and a professor from the University of California, Irvine who is an expert in energy systems about what he thinks about the trash-to-energy system.