American Biogas Council teams up with Water Environment Federation

The American Biogas Council (ABC) is joining forces with the Water Environment Federation (WEF) to expand the conversion of organic waste into renewable energy and valuable soil products at facilities throughout the US.

There are 2,200 biogas facilities throughout the US, with about 1,300 of those at water resource recovery facilities. However, at present there are close to 4,000 water facilities in the country where new biogas systems could be installed.

WEF, a not-for-profit technical and educational organisation of 33,000 individual members and 75 affiliated Member Associations representing water quality professionals around the world, recently published a review of biogas systems in the water sector. ABC meanwhile, has just launched the new Digestate Certification Programme, creating a standard method for describing the qualities of digestate, the product generated by anaerobic digestion of organic materials.

Now, the organisations will work in partnership to promote resource recovery, specifically the use of energy and products produced from biogas systems at water facilities. WEF and ABC confirmed these goals with a new memorandum of understanding.

“Energy derived from wastewater and biosolids moves our nation toward a more resilient and sustainable future, and there is tremendous potential for growth in the generation of these renewable resources” said WEF Executive Director Eileen O’Neill. “WEF is happy to once again formalise our commitment to a broader and deeper working relationship with the ABC and we look forward to working with ABC in promoting opportunities for the beneficial use of biogas and digested residuals.”

“A significant opportunity exists to utilise existing wastewater digester capacity to recycle organic materials, like the billions of pounds of food that Americans waste each year,” said Patrick Serfass, Executive Director of the ABC. “In the U.S., we could build more than 13,000 new biogas systems. One-third of them can be built at water resource recovery facilities. These biogas projects will create jobs, investment and choices for generating energy, soil products and waste management. We’re extremely pleased to continue our relationship with the Water Environment Federation under this MOU.”

Specifically, the two organisations support:

  • The beneficial use of biogas, digested materials and biosolids as an economically and environmentally sound energy and waste management solution for communities;
  • The use of proven technologies that facilitate energy and nutrient recovery;
  • Encouraging federal and state legislation that promotes the use of biogas as a renewable energy source; proactive communications and public outreach to continue to build a strong base of support for products made from digested materials;
  • Continued research and sound science in regards to biosolids management; and the development of state and federal regulations.

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