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Thread: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

  1. #1
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    Default Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    "Bahler said one of his dairy cows produces about 10 gallons of milk a day, but he said each cow also produces about 15 gallons of manure."

    "Bahler said this methane digester will be up and running in October, transforming waste from his 3,000 dairy cows into natural gas.Producing quantities that he said could power 800 homes for one year’s time."



    Ellington farm turns manure into natural gas (wfsb.com)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    They started similar programs here in 2018, AFAIK. Some of our family is involved. The facilities are wild.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    No s..t?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Son lives next door to Bahler, say's it's a very hi-tech dairy farm with large fans built into the barns to keep the cows comfortable, classical music plays for them and the milking process is automated for the cows to give milk when they want to.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    LOL. Meanwhile, solar shines all over his farm, with infinitely more energy potential than some farting cows.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    now here is an interesting question. Methane is a greenhouse gas, a nasty one too. Is it cleaner to capture and burn it into CO2 or let it waft up into the atmosphere on it's own?
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Dairy farms are historically brutally abusive. I’m sure there are exceptions. Or greenwashed marketing.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Art Haberland View Post
    now here is an interesting question. Methane is a greenhouse gas, a nasty one too. Is it cleaner to capture and burn it into CO2 or let it waft up into the atmosphere on it's own?
    It’s true that methane is a horribly effective greenhouse gas and preventing leaks with multiple small scale producers would be a challenge.

    The flip side is that it burns cleanly and it’s likely the most effective “flip it on/off” electricity source. Gas turbines can be brought online in as little as 15 minutes. This makes them a good candidate for sitting in reserve, should your baseline fail.

    The other thing is that for the foreseeable future, methane will likely continue to be the primary heat source for people through the northern half of the country.

    While I definitely see wind/solar as the future (however far off that may be…) I’m rooting for technology like this to work and see it as a step in the right direction.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    Dairy farms are historically brutally abusive. I’m sure there are exceptions. Or greenwashed marketing.
    My sister and her husband own a dairy farm in upstate N.Y.
    1000 cows and lots of automation.
    The main cow barn is very large with open sides for ventilation. Canvas sheets cover the sides during winter.
    Plenty of water and feed.
    They get marched through the milking parlor twice a day.
    The downside is that they live their entire lives in barns, never going outside to graze.
    Grazing on just grass would produce little milk. They are fed an assortment of feeds which are all grown and harvested on the farm.
    All the poop in the barns is automatically scooped into a huge mature pit.
    This is then pumped into tank trucks that spread it on the fields.

    These cows are well taken care of, but I certainly wouldn't want to live their existence.
    They are dumber than dirt, but not mistreated.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by skuthorp View Post
    no s..t?
    yes! Lots!

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    There is a Biogas powered train program going in Sweden. https://www.renewableenergymagazine....cal%20abattoir.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    In the late 80´s/early 90´s Brazil commissioned the Itaipu hydro-electric generating plant - 20 generating units rated at 700 MW each - at a time when China was roughly in the same socio-economic category as India.

    The Chinese at the time would declare repeatedly that their generating capacity was "3X Itaipu", composed of small rural generating units running off methane gas harvested from biodigestors transforming excrement from pig farms into methane gas + a bug-free soil-enriching effluent (also used as a feed for fish-farms).

    A major benefit of these biodigestors was also to radically reduce contamination and disease to living creatures in the countryside

    The Chinese are currently the second-largest economy on the planet, and bio-digestors seem to have vanished from their official portfolio.

    However, the combustion of methane does release carbon-dioxide into the air.......

    As a sideline, cow-dung thinned out as cow-cakes and dried in the sun are used in India - as well as Pakistan - as a substitute for fire-wood in rural areas, since the beginning of time.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Biogas has been good business and it's only getting bigger. Maersk has orderd 12 new methanol fueled ships, their projected consumption greatly exceeds the entire world's current generating capacity for "green" methanol. This is just an example, the market is there for all kinds of "green" technology. Biogas is profitable if you have a farm big enough and it's not competing against other tech, it's complementary. The farmer can still cover all his buildings with solar panels and install wind turbines, they are not mutually exclusive.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Most of the methane cows produce is from their burps- which can't be harvested yet Worldwide, termites produce far more methane than cows. My cows wander into the shed to get out of the wind or rain or to eat. They live a good life. I was going to collect the poop from around the paddocks and use it to improve the soil in my many gardens, but there are so many dung beetles here- of several species- that within a day of being dropped most of the poop has been spread out and buried. If I want a share I have to collect it while it's still fresh which isn't ideal. And something I've mentioned before- the coal mines close to my place employ around two thousand people. Most earn between thirteen hundred and two grand a week, some much more. They're the ones who have the big mortgages, the nice cars, go out to dinner regularly, buy new stuff for their farms and hobbies- in other words a major part of keeping the local community going. The big solar farm two minutes west of my place employs a couple of electricians and a coupe of fellers to keep the grass down. The big wind farm twenty minutes from here employs even less. There's more to shutting down coal mines than environmental considerations- unfortunately. JayInOz

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Rather remarkable, despite the current emphasis on renewable-energy, to learn of 12 ocean-going vessels on order from Maersk to run on "green" methanol. However, if the fuel was to be "green" ethanol, Brazil could well be an up-and-running contender for the supply.
    Any idea as to how the "green" methanol will be produced ? I recall in the past, when "green" ethanol producers in Brazil were subjecting consumers to monopolistic pricing, the govt. began importing methanol from Russia (think it was) at rock bottom rates......and seasoned drunkards were warned not to drink alcohol anymore from fuel stations, so as to not risk losing their eyesight (drinking methanol).
    Last edited by carioca1232001; 07-03-2022 at 08:40 PM.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by carioca1232001 View Post
    Rather remarkable, despite the current emphasis on renewable-energy, to learn of 12 ocean-going vessels on order from Maersk to run on "green" methanol. However, if the fuel was to be "green" ethanol, Brazil could well be an up-and-running contender for the supply.
    Any idea as to how the "green" methanol will be produced ? I recall in the past, when "green" ethanol producers in Brazil were subjecting consumers to monopolistic pricing, the govt. began importing methanol from Russia (think it was) at rock bottom rates......and seasoned drunkards were warned not to drink alcohol anymore from fuel stations, so as to not risk losing their eyesight (drinking methanol).
    Mainly from renewable electricity, there are contracts mentioned with big windfarms in several countries. Methanol can be "green" in several ways, one of it beeing biogas reforming. Brazil could well be a big producer, methanol can be made from bagasse and other plant material. The market is huge, Maersk has said they aim to have the entire fleet carbon neutral, and they are not alone. Methanol is just one technologic lane, there are others.

    The only reason renewable energy is not more prevalent is because of how cheap fossil energy actually is by comparison. Once the use of fossil energy becomes undesirable most of the market it now dominates is open. Biogas is a legitimate avenue, if the conditions are present there is no excuse not to use it. Big farms and sevage treatment plants are a natural fit for it. If they can put up with the initial cost methanol will probably be more profitable then electricity for them, it's a more efficient process.
    Last edited by Rumars; 07-03-2022 at 09:37 PM.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    I was at the local tip recently when a feller dropped off twelve full drums of used cooking oil. We talked about bio diesel and he said he can't find any takers. Our council don't have any way of using it either, so it'll just be dumped somewhere. The feller who put the dams in on my previous farm was running his big dozer on bio diesel. I think it was costing him about nine cents a litre to produce. When the government make it it's the same price as regular diesel. Hmmm.... JayInOz
    Last edited by JayInOz; 07-04-2022 at 02:30 AM.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    This has been a thing in some European countries for quite a while, a contractor will pick up the cow manure from wintering barns, take it to a digester, generate electricity from the methane produced by composting the stuff, the heat of which sterilises it so it can be then used as fertiliser ( avoiding mad cow disease) and then selling the product back to the farmers. So two income streams from the same process.

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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    The advantage of a digester is that you can use the manure to make power & then you can still spread it on the fields. IIRC, the first one in VT was about 10 years ago.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich Jones View Post
    My sister and her husband own a dairy farm in upstate N.Y.
    1000 cows and lots of automation.
    The main cow barn is very large with open sides for ventilation. Canvas sheets cover the sides during winter.
    Plenty of water and feed.
    They get marched through the milking parlor twice a day.
    The downside is that they live their entire lives in barns, never going outside to graze.
    Grazing on just grass would produce little milk. They are fed an assortment of feeds which are all grown and harvested on the farm.
    All the poop in the barns is automatically scooped into a huge mature pit.
    This is then pumped into tank trucks that spread it on the fields.

    These cows are well taken care of, but I certainly wouldn't want to live their existence.
    They are dumber than dirt, but not mistreated.
    Say what? I'll be sure to let Fonterra NZ know - they're about the 5th largest dairy company globally, and almost none of their farmers do the barn thing. I can promise you grass is not the problem!
    Dairy is a bit contentious here - massive income nationally, but they are completely f****** waterways and aquifers with intensive irrigation going out, and nitrates leaching from fertiliser and urine going in. We've already passed peak-cow, as numbers are getting dialled back a bit, but a lot of the damage is done. I literally wouldn't let my dog swim in what's left of some of the rivers that we used to go in as kids, due to low flow and the resulting toxic algae .

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  21. #21
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rumars View Post
    Mainly from renewable electricity, there are contracts mentioned with big windfarms in several countries. Methanol can be "green" in several ways, one of it beeing biogas reforming. Brazil could well be a big producer, methanol can be made from bagasse and other plant material. The market is huge, Maersk has said they aim to have the entire fleet carbon neutral, and they are not alone. Methanol is just one technologic lane, there are others.

    The only reason renewable energy is not more prevalent is because of how cheap fossil energy actually is by comparison. Once the use of fossil energy becomes undesirable most of the market it now dominates is open. Biogas is a legitimate avenue, if the conditions are present there is no excuse not to use it. Big farms and sevage treatment plants are a natural fit for it. If they can put up with the initial cost methanol will probably be more profitable then electricity for them, it's a more efficient process.
    There you are.... an excerpt from last week´s London Times :

    "A leading renewable energy executive has been been hired by BP to replace the head of its gas and low-carbon energy division as the oil major steps up its push into wind power.

    Anja-Isabel Dotzenrath, 54, quit as chief executive of RWE Renewables last month and will join the BP as its executive vice-president in March.

    She will replace Dev Sanyal, 55, who had been at BP since 1989 and has served on its executive team for more than a decade.

    The move comes as BP seeks to convince investors that it can make money while chasing some of the most aggressive deployment targets in the sector, including big bets on offshore wind. It is aiming to deploy 50 gigawatts of renewable capacity by 2030, equivalent to the entire existing renewable capacity of the UK.

    RWE Renewables, part of RWE, the German energy group, is the world’s second biggest offshore wind developer and one of the biggest renewables companies globally......"

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    In the irony department regarding the OP, there’s a farm near here with a digester of fairly large size. They have a small compression station (brings it to line pressure) and sell part of the gas to the local utility. The reminder is used for heating and hot water for the house and barn. The digester uses electronic equipment to stir the ferment mixture. That, and the compression station is powered by solar.

    The ferment is made up of manure, spilled hay and silage cleaned out of the barns in the morning. Been up and running for a number of years.
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  23. #23
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    Default

    Methane is itself a greenhouse gas, 20 times more warming than CO2, according to published sources. Most of the methane released is from dairy, cattle and landfills. So, using it is almost secondary to capturing it.


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  24. #24
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    Default

    Hey, Woodpile, shouldnt the thread title read, YES BS?




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  25. #25
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    Hey, Woodpile, shouldnt the thread title read, YES BS?




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Good question, this thread stinks.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Green Mountain Power has a program where we pay a couple of cents more per KWH for electricity from local manure digesters.
    The carbon from methane produced by manure digesters is not fossil carbon, last summer it was in the atmosphere so there is a double benefit. No "new" fossil carbon =needs to be liberated, and methane is prevented from joining the atmosphere.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Moooo-ve over solar, no BS.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodpile View Post
    Good question, this thread stinks.
    Eau de Moo!

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