This website is a live resource for Australian Pork producers interested in on-farm use of biogas. The main source of biogas considered here is the natural decay of piggery waste in piggery effluent ponds. There are a number of reasons why this biogas is of interest:-
Energy source: The biogas that is produced bubbles to the surface of the effluent pond and escapes into the atmosphere. Because biogas contains methane (55-70%), biogas is flammable when it mixes with air, which is also why it can be used as a fuel to heat, cool or produce electricity. It is primarily this recovery and use of energy from biogas on-farm that pays for the additional capital infrastructure that is required to be able to use the biogas. The amount of methane that can be produced is readily estimated from a known herd profile and feed characteristics.
Piggery waste decays in an anaerobic pond producing methane
Odour control: Burning of methane in biogas (by converting it into energy or just by flaring it as shown in the image) also destroys some of the odorous ingredients in biogas and in this way can greatly reduce odour from effluent ponds.
Capturing and flaring methane at a piggery
Carbon abatement: Burning the methane in biogas (by converting it into energy or just by flaring it) also greatly reduces the greenhouse gas impact of pork production. This is because methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, turns into less potent carbon dioxide when the methane is burnt. For this reason, additional income can be generated with the Australian government’s Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI) through which pork producers can earn carbon credits for the emissions reduction, and these carbon credits can then be sold on at the market value.
Is Biogas an Option for You?
The opportunities for on-farm biogas use can be very site-specific and are best assessed on a site-by-site basis. The economic feasibility of using biogas can be very different, even for piggeries of the same size but with different site-specific features.
For this reason, until the Australian piggery industry builds a strong biogas profile in all states and territories, it is recommended that you allow us to step through your site-specific features with you to help you identify whether piggery biogas can work for you or not (free-of-charge service to Australian producers).
What other support is available to Australian producers through this free energy support program?
– Professional advice on aspects of biogas/effluent management
– Independent technical reviews of project proposals.
– Low cost analytical testing related to pond health/biogas production
– Technical support during the application process for Carbon Farming Initiative
Please feel free to email Team Leader Dr. Stephan Tait or call on 0466 699 817 or 07 3346 7208. Pork CRC would be keen to hear from you.