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Got Manure? Enhancing Environmental and Economic Sustainability

Syracuse, New York
March 27-29, 2012

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Collage of three site tour locations from Got Manure? conference.






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AgSTAR co-hosted Got Manure? Enhancing Environmental and Economic Sustainability with Cornell's PRO-DAIRY Program, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)-Natural Resources Conservation Service. Below is the conference agenda with links to speaker presentations. PRO-DAIRY has posted the conference proceedings on its website.

Anaerobic Digester Site Tours - Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tour of Cayuga County Soil and Water Regional Digester

  • The Cayuga County Soil and Water Regional Digester is a newly constructed centralized anaerobic digester system located in Auburn. The facility was built to process manure from nearby dairy farms, food waste, and waste fats from local sources. The project has a generation capacity of 625 kilowatts and produces 25 tons/day of post-digestion separated solids and 31,000 gallons/day of separated liquid. The combined heat and power system powers the district campus buildings and excess power is exported to the grid. The anaerobic digester system is an aboveground mesophilic “hydraulic-mix” system that features blending without internal moving parts, an integrated sediment removal system, and fully automated operation.
  • Review PRO-DAIRY's updated case study (PDF) (8 pp, 281K) for more information.
  • USDA-Rural Development hosted a press event with AgSTAR and local/state representatives to celebrate the grand opening.
  • AgSTAR and its co-hosts would like to thank the following people for making the site tour a success:
    Tim Seeler, Seeler Engineering
    Kaymar Zadeh, Blue Electron
    Ronald Podolak, Cayuga County Soil & Water Conservation District
    Mike Riley, Cayuga County Soil & Water Conservation District

Tour of Patterson Dairy Digester

  • Patterson Dairy Farms, Inc., a family farm for the past seven generations, is located in Auburn. The farm commissioned RCM International, LLC to develop an anaerobic digester system in 2005 to minimize the odor from farm operations and to take advantage of the combined heat and power that would be produced. The digester is a 1.2 million gallon mixed digester with a hydraulic retention time designed to be approximately 20 days, based on manure from more than 1,000 dairy cows and co-digestion of food waste.
  • Review PRO-DAIRY’s updated case study (PDF) (10 pp, 397K) for more information.
  • AgSTAR and its co-hosts would like to thank the following people for making the site tour a success:
    Jon Patterson, Patterson Dairy
    Connie Patterson, Patterson Dairy

Tour of Synergy Dairy Digester

  • CH4 Biogas, LLC formed Synergy Biogas, LLC to own and operate an anaerobic digester system located at Synergy Dairy in Covington. The digester, designed by Bigadan A/S, has an effective capacity of 2.2 million gallons. Biogas from the digester fuels a 1.4 megawatt GE-Jenbacher engine-generator set. The electricity produced is used onsite to power the farm and additional power is sold to the local grid. The project became operational at the end of 2011.
  • Review PRO-DAIRY's updated case study (PDF) (8 pp, 380K) for more information.
  • AgSTAR and its co-hosts would like to thank the following people for making the site tour a success:
    Paul Toretta, CH4 Biogas
    Randy Mastin, CH4 Biogas
    Lauren Toretta, CH4 Biogas
    Chris Noble, Linwood Management/Synergy Dairy
    John Rudgers, Linwood Management/Synergy Dairy

Carbon Management Workshop: the Business Case for Manure Digesters: Presentations from the Climate Action Reserve's workshop are available.


Day One - Wednesday, March 28, 2012

9:00 AM Welcome
George Allen, Northeast Dairy Producers Association & Owner of Allenwaite Farms, Inc. (PDF) (35 pp, 2MB)
9:15 AM Opening Remarks
Pat Hooker, Director of Agribusiness Development, Empire State Development Corporation
9:35 AM

Cows, Manure, People, Money, and the Environment
Moderator: Joe Kramer, Energy Center of Wisconsin

11:20 AM

Integrated Manure Treatment System Operator Panel
Moderator: Curt Gooch, Cornell PRO-DAIRY

  • Dean Doornink, Jon-De Farm
  • John Jacobs, Green Valley Dairy
  • Steve Reinford, Reinford Farm
  • Greg Rejman, Sunnyside Farms
  • Bill Rowell, Green Mountain Dairy
1:50 PM

Integrated Manure Management System Planning
Moderator: Peter Wright, NRCS

4:10 PM

Co-Digestion: Role and Impacts
Moderator: Bruce Bailey, quasar energy group

8:00 PM Discussion of NYS Anaerobic Digestion Challenges and Opportunities, Tom Fiesinger, NYSERDA (PDF) (66 pp, 325K)

Day Two - Thursday, March 29, 2012

7:30 AM

American Biogas Council Meeting

  • Conference attendees heard updates from the organization on its initiatives and got the opportunity to network.
8:30 AM

Economics of Manure Handling/Treatment/Utilization Systems
Moderator: Garth Boyd, Camco

10:20 AM

Biogas Utilization
Moderator: Michael Mitariten, Guild Associates, Inc.

11:15 AM

Track 1: Advanced Manure Treatment
Moderator: Jeff Porter, NRCS

11:15 AM

Track 2: Small Scale Anaerobic Digestion
Moderator: Dave Dunn, Central Vermont Public Service

1:05 PM

Making the News Rather than Being in the News
Moderator: Grant Grinstead, Northern Biogas LLC

2:55 PM

Impacts of Greenhouse Gas Policy on Anaerobic Digestion
Moderator: Rick Stowell, University of Nebraska, Lincoln

3:45 PM

Conference Wrap-Up
Moderator: Jerry Bingold, Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy

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