American Biogas Council


New bioenergy approach could mean cleaner water, plus a big payday for farmers

Shashi Menon, a managing partner at ABC Member EcoEngineers, said that efforts to improve water quality, if coordinated with the production of clean fuels from organic waste, would enhance the effectiveness of both initiatives, while generating profits, particularly for farmers, as well as tax proceeds. The processing of waste in anaerobic digesters, and efforts to clean rivers and lakes, have “been moving in parallel,” he said. “We started noticing that biogas and anaerobic digesters straddle these two major silos. We saw an opportunity.”

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Latest News [view all]

Mystery Surrounds WI Governor's Biogas Announcement
Robert Weidner, chair of the Kewaunee County Board, was informed that the governor was visiting but was not told why. In his surprise visit, Walker announced that he had requested the Public Service Commission (PSC), the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) to collaborate on recommendations by Dec. 1 that, according to a press release from the Governor's office, “propose a tangible private sector response linking the application of digester technology to environmentally sensitive areas of Wisconsin, specifically areas with high concentrations of dairy cattle. A Request for Proposal (RFP) laying the groundwork for actionable items should be ready to release publically [sic] in January.” More>>

California Targets Dairy Cows to Combat Global Warming
In September 2016, California Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation to regulate emissions emanating from livestock operations for the first time. Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, is a byproduct of digestive cycles for cattle. Dairy farmers in fierce opposition of the legislation are worried that with drought, rising labor costs, lower milk prices, and new legislation increasing overtime pay, they will be forced to shut down their operations. One option is for farmers to buy methane digesters to convert cattle waste byproducts into energy, but farmers are concerned about the technology's cost. To alleviate the financial burden on farmers, California has allocated $50 million to subsidizing the digesters. More>>

WI Public Service Commission Announces $20 Million in Funding for Biodigester Initiative
The Public Service Commission, which oversees the state of Wisconsin's "Focus on Energy" energy rebate program, announced that it would dedicate up to $20 million towards biodigester deployment in their open meeting of December 1, 2016. Conceptually, the PSC indicated interest in a network of digesters, probably aided by nutrient recovery systems, that would create renewable energy (likely gas that would be injected into a pipeline), while processing nutrients that may otherwise be negatively impacting ground and/or surface waters. More>>

Dane County Gains Approval for $18 Million Gas Cleanup & Pipeline Injection System
Dane County (where Madison is located) received County Board approval in late November for County Executive Joe Parisi's initiative to modify the County's energy production from its landfill. Currently, the landfill is outfitted with generators to create electricity which is sold at a negotiated price to the local power company. The County Board granted approval in the capital budget for $18 million to install gas cleanup technology and pipeline injection equipment to inject a large portion of the gas into the interstate pipeline operated by ANR. The County estimates it could pay off the investment in 3-4 years, and cites the uncertainty of its future electricity contract as a reason it began looking at alternatives. More>>

Minnesota county will dedicate half of state recycling money to organics processing
As a state, Minnesota has the weakest of the six states with organics recycling laws in place. But this county is taking extra measures to make sure organics get recycled. "As expected, the results of this characterization study are similar to what nearby Ramsey and Washington counties found in their own 2014 study. With this added evidence that organics remain the largest portion of recyclable material left in the waste stream, Hennepin can better make the case that municipalities should focus more on recovery options. This will also make progress on the state's goal of a 75% diversion rate for the area by 2030." More>>

CalRecycle Study Reveals Large Amounts of Unrecycled Organic Material
According to CalRecycle, the State of California disposed of 33.2 million tons of material in 2015 and about 40 percent of the increased disposal was organic material, such as food waste and yard waste. More>>

Latest Events [view all]

State Policy Committee Meeting
Meeting to discuss state policy issues at 2 PM ET. Call information located on Members Only site. More>>

ABC Board of Directors Meeting
December meeting for the Board of Directors. More>>

ABC Board of Directors Meeting
The Board of Directors will be meeting Monday, December 12at 1pm ET. More>>

Federal Policy Committee Meeting
Meeting to discuss federal policy issues at 2 PM ET. Call information located on Members Only site. More>>

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