Brightmark Energy, a San Francisco-based waste and energy development company, has purchased an anaerobic digester northwest of Madison, Wis., that will convert 90,000 gallons/day of dairy waste from three local farms into biogas and other products.
After the planned installation of gas upgrading equipment is completed, the project is expected to produce enough renewable natural gas (RNG) to replace at least 50,000 MMBtu of conventional natural gas each year. That is enough fuel to travel 1.27 million miles in a compressed natural gas bus, or from San Francisco to New York and back over 200 times, says Brightmark.
The project was developed in close coordination with Dane County, Wis. After all phases are complete, the RNG collected from the anaerobic digester will be transported to the county’s recently completed landfill gas processing facility, where it will be injected directly into an interstate pipeline owned by ANR Pipeline Co. The Dane County project is the first such facility in the U.S. designed to receive biogas from multiple off-site locations and connect that renewable gas with RNG stations locally and across the nation.
Brightmark Energy purchased the digester from Clean Fuel Partners, which will continue to provide operations and maintenance support.
John Haeckel, founder and CEO of Clean Fuel Partners, says, “We look forward to Brightmark taking this facility to a new level. Their investment will create both long-term viability and increased manure processing for the surrounding area – a key goal behind the original cooperative development of the project with Dane County.”
“Brightmark is thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in this unique gas processing facility here in Wisconsin,” says Bob Powell, CEO of Brightmark Energy. “This project is a win-win for all – it’s good for the local environment, good for the regional economy and good for the climate.”
“We look forward to working with Brightmark Energy as they invest in additional renewable natural gas and manure treatment facilities,” adds Joe Parisi, Dane County executive. “This community digester represents a victory for family dairy farms, cleaner air and cleaner lakes.”
Farmers who are interested in providing additional manure as feedstock for the Madison digester should reach out to Brightmark Energy. In addition to the Dane County project, the company is currently developing similar biogas projects nationwide; thus, it is actively seeking feedstock suppliers with an interest in collaborating.
“As a participating farm, we are excited to have Brightmark Energy as a partner in anaerobic digestion of the manure from our cows,” comments Chuck Ripp of Ripp’s Dairy Valley LLC. “This agreement will help local farms continue to be environmentally friendly to our community and help us to stay in compliance with environmental regulations.”