Wisconsin AD facility converted from power generation to GNR
With support from the leadership of Dane County, Wisconsin, EnTech Solutions, a full-service clean energy solutions provider, has partnered with Northern Biogas, a fully funded renewable natural gas (RNG) producer, to reallocate an anaerobic biodigester facility that once generated electricity to now produce clean RNG from agricultural waste from four local dairy farms.
Digesters are an integral part of dairy farm manure and organic waste management. This facility incorporates state-of-the-art technology, including a nutrient concentration system that returns clean water to the Yahara watershed while reducing phosphorus runoff to nearby streams and lakes. In 2021, over 27 million gallons of manure were processed through the biodigester, removing over 57,000 pounds of phosphorus from the watershed.
“Water and soil are essential to life on earth, and farmers continue to look for opportunities to improve water quality and soil health,” said Jeff Endres, co-owner of Endres Berryridge Farms. “Northern Biogas and EnTech Solutions have opened up high-tech opportunities around dairy manure, working with farmers in the region to harvest methane and return fiber and liquid nutrients to farmers for use as organic fertilizer and litter, maximizing all aspects of the nutrient cycle.”
EnTech Solutions has incorporated a renewable energy microgrid into the facility, with solar panels and batteries that provide over 2.8 MW of clean energy generation, the equivalent of powering over 400 homes. This creates a carbon negative process which results in an RNG with a lower carbon intensity (CI) score. Overall, the facility will reduce emissions by more than 13,500 metric tons per year of carbon dioxide equivalent. The reduction is equivalent to removing emissions from almost 34 million miles traveled by cars.
“Partnering with EnTech Solutions, Northern Biogas and our family dairy farms is paving the way for local renewable energy, cleaner lakes and the ability of our farm families to milk cows for generations to come,” said Joe. Parisi, Dane County Manager. “This new investment in cutting-edge technology benefits both the local environment and our agricultural economy while fighting climate change.
RNG from the facility is trucked to the Dane County landfill offload station, where it is injected via county equipment into the interstate transmission pipeline for use as renewable fuel for powering RNG vehicle fleets. US Gain, a division of Wisconsin-based US Venture Inc. and a leader in the development and distribution of alternative fuels, is buying RNG and marketing it to the transportation industry in California. RNG from cow manure can reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by up to 400% when used to replace traditional fossil fuels.
“Using our engineering and energy technology experience, we were able to convert the Middleton facility into an even more efficient producer of clean RNG, and in a reduced time frame,” said Scott Romenesko, President of EnTech Solutions. “We know this is a repeatable process that we can apply to help other biodigesters achieve their environmental goals.”
“We saw the Middleton project as a great opportunity to leverage our 18 years of experience in the field of anaerobic digesters and nutrient management to support EnTech Solutions in their mission to create sustainable and reliable energy solutions,” said Northern Biogas President Dave Fitch. “Together, we share a passion for innovation and a commitment to clean energy. With the support of Dane County and the local community, we believe these new systems and technologies will have a positive impact on farmers and the surrounding environment.
Media and community members are invited to a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Middleton Biodigester on Wednesday, April 27 beginning at 11 a.m. Information about the facility will be shared and tours will be offered. Please see this link for more information and to register.
For more information about EnTech Solutions, visit energybyentech.com.
For more information on Dane County’s climate change, phosphorus runoff reduction, and plant RNG programs, visit daneclimateaction.org.
For more information about Northern Biogas, visit northbiogas.com.
For more information about US Gain, visit usgain.com.