Anaerobic digestion is not a new technology and is used worldwide on farms, in conjunction with wastewater treatment plants, and for handling food waste. Anaerobic digestion involves the use of microorganisms to breakdown products such as animal manure, food waste, and sludge (among other things).
The primary byproducts of this process are biogas and digestate. Biogas can be used to power generators or can be cleaned up and sold as renewable natural gas. Renewable natural gas has become a highly valued byproduct in recent years. Digestate is high in nutrients and can be used for livestock bedding, soil amendments, and fertilizers.
Anaerobic digesters provide benefits such as onsite generation of renewable energy, odor control, pathogen reduction, and nutrient recycling, to name a few. However, anaerobic digesters are a large investment and historically there have been problems with operation, maintenance, and markets for the byproducts. Some of these problems include an unfavorable rate for electricity generated from the utility and cost of maintenance.
Contact: Tess Van Gorder | 517-323-6711
MFB #42 Biomass/Renewable Products
MFB #85 Resource Recovery
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