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Sustainable Economic, Marketing, Environmental and Financial Opportunities for Biogas Recovery Systems

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  • Stegelin, Forrest E.

Abstract

Livestock producers operating large-scale confinement operations, such as dairies, are looking for ways to handle and dispose of manure that are cost effective and efficiently meet odor and pollution policies. Farm level production of biogas using anaerobic digesters is one solution that helps control methane emissions. Methane is an odorless gas that can be used to generate electricity, develop fiber products (such as fiber boards, decking, cow pots and building materials) and potting medium as a soil or peat replacement and livestock bedding, establish carbon credits, or provide other value-added products like fertilizer and raw gas or transport fuel, thereby having marketability and economic value. Substantial environmental benefits of odor control, water quality protection, and greenhouse gas reductions also exist. Because of the tangible and intangible benefits possible from reducing methane emissions via anaerobic digesters, biogas recovery systems are prudent financially as well, with single-digit payback periods, double-digit simple rates of return, approximately $1 million (USD) in net present value, double-digit internal rates of return, and relatively large benefit-cost ratios associated with the savings over time.

Suggested Citation

  • Stegelin, Forrest E., 2010. "Sustainable Economic, Marketing, Environmental and Financial Opportunities for Biogas Recovery Systems," WERA-72 Annual Meeting, June 13-15, 2010, Santa Clara, California 93418, WERA-72 (formerly WCC-72): Western Education\Extension and Research Activities Committee on Agribusiness.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:wera10:93418
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    Agribusiness;

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