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Dairy Manure and Methane Recovery

For most of us, 2020 cant be over soon enough. Yet, in the digester development world, each day from today through 2024 is precious time to identify facilities, procure funding, and install digesters. Why? To capture methane and use it as valuable renewable compressed natural gas (RCNG) and meet ambitious manure methane reduction targets.

How is the California digester portfolio doing? Since 2015, 119 dairies have installed, or are installing, digesters to capture and utilize manure methane. The number of dairy projects receiving funding by year and developer are shown in Table 1. The 2015 projects used methane for electricity. Only two digesters since then use methane for electricity. Almost all facilities use biogas for renewable compressed natural gas. Digesters are being developed in six counties within the San Joaquin Valley. The success of these projects and others yet to come will help California dairies meet the ambitious goal of 40 percent reduction in manure methane from 2013 levels by 2030.

For more information on funding, see the CDFA website. — By Deanne Meyer – UC Davis Department of Animal Science & UCANR

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