3-Day ABC Digester Operator Training: Boston

North Andover, Massachusetts
October 1-3, 2019
Tuition: $1600 ABC members, $1900 Non-members (only 30 seats available)
Includes: 3 training days with 3 qualified instructors, 2 site visits, training handbook, breakfast (at the preferred hotel), lunch, snacks, and daily transportation to the classroom and site visits (from the preferred hotel). 

Join ABC and digester operators from around the US this October for the much requested digester operator training in Boston. This intensive operator training class is designed for digester operators, operations managers, owners, and developers but open to all. Attendees will get 4 half-days of classroom instruction plus 2 hands-on site visits to a farm-based manure and food waste digester and a wastewater digester. Transportation from the preferred hotel to the classroom and to the sites is included as are lunches and breakfast (if you stay at the preferred hotel). In addition, during the training, attendees will receive ABC’s safety training which is one of the requirements for ABC’s Digester Operator Certification. If you’re interested in completing your Operator Certification, you must complete the safety module which is not held at every training. View more details below and you can find photos from our past trainings here!  

Detailed Agenda Here


Jody Jackson
Vice President Health, Safety & Environmental,
Montrose Environmental Group
Jody's Bio

Jody is an OSHA certified trainer with a BA in Occupational Safety and Health. He has been a Health, Safety, and Environment professional for the past 30 years, working in the petrochemical and refining industry for ExxonMobil, Chevron, Total, and Formosa Plastic. Most recently he has chosen to apply his knowledge of natural gas to biogas, both with anaerobic and landfill gas. With this wealth of experience, he offers great insight on the risks of biogas plant operations from the process safety perspective. Additionally, Jody has held jobs as an Industrial Fire Protection instructor at Texas A&M, a rescue instructor, a hazardous materials instructor, and an emergency medical technician.

Bernie Sheff
Vice President of Engineering, Montrose Environmental Group, Inc.
Chairman, American Biogas Council 
Bernie's Bio

Bernie Sheff holds both Bachelors and Masters of Science in Civil Engineering from Michigan State University. He has been a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of Michigan since 1988 and is also registered in the states of Massachusetts, Ohio and Indiana. He started his career with STS Consultants (STS) in 1984 as an assistant project engineer. He became the VP of the Michigan region for STS and completed his first digestion project as part of a 1 MGD wastewater treatment facility in 1991. This facility a large beef abattoir in SW Michigan was one of many projects in the animal processing arena including systems at duck, chicken and hog operations.

Since early 2000 he has focused on nutrient recovery, sand separation and digestion in the agricultural market, most significantly the dairy industry and the co-digestion of residuals from confined feeding operations and food processing residuals. A 3 year board member, in November of 2014 he was elected as Chairman of the Board of the American Biogas Council.

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Training Topics

Day 1
  • Introduction to the Science of AD
  • Chemistry for Digesters
  • Math for Digesters
  • Site visit (Haverhill Digester or Jordan Family Farm)
Day 2
  • Safety
    • Lockout Tagout 
    • Confined Space Entry 
    • Hot Work and Fire Prevention 
    • Hazard Communication Update
    • Hydrogen Sulfide
Day 3
  • Odor Prevention & Management
  • Coarse and Fine Solids Separation
  • Digestate Certification
  • Nutrient Recovery
  • Site visit (Greater Lawrence Sanitary District)

Travel Logistics:  Boston Logan International Airport |1 Harborside Dr, Boston, MA 02128

Classroom: Groundwork Lawrence | 50 Island Street Entrance B, Lawrence, MA 01840

Preferred hotel: Holiday Inn Express Andover North| 224 Winthrop Ave, Lawrence, MA 01843 | Phone: (978) 975-4050. Make your reservation here.  The bus will be picking up and dropping off participants at this location. If you stay at another hotel, you must get to this hotel before the bus leaves or arrive at the first classroom training location each day before the bus arrives.

Recommended Dress Code: No need to dress up. Wear jeans, etc for spring and being outside and shoes/boots (closed-toe shoes are mandatory) for being at a digester. We can provide any gloves, eye and hearing protection that is needed.

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