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Investment in a Methane Digester: An Application of Capital Budgeting and Real Options

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  • Jeffrey R. Stokes
  • Rekha M. Rajagopalan
  • Spiro E. Stefanou

Abstract

Methane digesters may offer dairy producers a way to lower production costs by becoming self-sufficient in electricity production. In addition, the technology may offer additional income through surplus electricity sales and fertilizer and bedding savings as well. However, the typical methane digester is a large and irreversible capital investment characterized by value uncertainty. Analyzed in a real option framework, the theory suggests a potential explanation for why producers in states like Pennsylvania require significant grant funding to adopt the technology, namely, as monetary compensation for the uncertainty in the value of the completed project. The study presents an empirical application. Copyright 2008, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffrey R. Stokes & Rekha M. Rajagopalan & Spiro E. Stefanou, 2008. "Investment in a Methane Digester: An Application of Capital Budgeting and Real Options," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 30(4), pages 664-676.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:revage:v:30:y:2008:i:4:p:664-676
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-9353.2008.00439.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 5474.
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    Cited by:

    1. Di Corato, Luca & Moretto, Michele, 2011. "Investing in biogas: Timing, technological choice and the value of flexibility from input mix," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1186-1193.
    2. Leuer, Elizabeth R. & Hyde, Jeffrey & Richard, Tom L., 2008. "Investing in Methane Digesters on Pennsylvania Dairy Farms: Implication of Scale Economies and Environmental Programs," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 37(2), October.
    3. Calum G. Turvey, 2010. "Biography: Kiyosi Itô and his influence on the study of agricultural finance and economics," Agricultural Finance Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 70(1), pages 5-20, May.
    4. Gloy, Brent A., 2010. "Carbon Dioxide Offsets from Anaerobic Digestion of Dairy Waste," Working Papers 126750, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    5. DeVuyst, Eric A. & Pryor, Scott W. & Lardy, Greg & Eide, Wallace & Wiederholt, Ron, 2011. "Cattle, ethanol, and biogas: Does closing the loop make economic sense?," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 104(8), pages 609-614, October.
    6. Cowley, Cortney & Brorsen, B. Wade & Hamilton, Doug, 2014. "Economic Feasibility of Anaerobic Digesters with Swine Operations," 2014 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2014, Minneapolis, Minnesota 170621, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    7. Bartolini, Fabio & Viaggi, Davide, 2012. "An analysis of policy scenario effects on the adoption of energy production on the farm: A case study in Emilia–Romagna (Italy)," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 454-464.
    8. repec:gam:jeners:v:10:y:2017:i:9:p:1416-:d:112037 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Robert C. Anderson & Alfons Weersink, 2014. "A Real Options Approach for the Investment Decisions of a Farm-Based Anaerobic Digester," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 62(1), pages 69-87, March.

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