SHARECOMMENTMORE

MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. (KSDK) - Landfills normally raise the stink level, but for one neighbor of the Maryland Heights landfill, it's actually lowering its utility bill.

Methane gas from the local landfill is pumped over to Pattonville High School to supplement the school's use of natural gas. The program translates to savings of around $40,000 per year for the school district.

This all started about 20 years ago with a partnership with Fred Weber Quarry which owned the landfill at the time. But the idea was homegrown.

"It originated with a student and a really innovative teacher who worked together to promote the concept to get something liked this going," said Dr. Mike Fulton, Pattonville Superintendent.

As far as student safety, Fulton said there are plenty of safety mechanisms in place. The school only uses the methane when it's at stable levels.