BlackRock to purchase renewable gas producer for €686 million

Investment management firm BlackRock is buying Vanguard Renewables, a company that produces renewable natural gas for utilities and energy firms such as Dominion Energy and Enbridge.

Massachusetts-based Vanguard Renewables works with dairy farmers and food companies to convert food waste and cow manure into an energy source.

The transaction is valued at $700m (€686m) and BlackRock could spend over $1bn (€980) in financing Vanguard Renewables’ expansion, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Companies including Ben & Jerry’s and yoghurt-maker Chobani commission Vanguard Renewables to combine their food waste with cow manure to produce renewable natural gas (RNG), using anaerobic digesters. Leftover material from the process can be used as low-carbon fertiliser.

Vanguard Renewables was founded in 2014, and with six anaerobic digesters installed in the northeastern US, it is one of the industry leaders.

It hopes to expand to 100 digesters in the US by 2026, which would generate enough energy to power hundreds of thousands of homes.

Through a partnership with Dominion Energy, Vanguard Renewables also turns manure alone into RNG. Dairy farmers can receive a fee for the manure as well as lease payments for providing the land that hosts the equipment.

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