Brightmark Energy to expand western New York dairy biogas project

Brightmark Energy is to expand its western New York dairy waste-to-biogas project. The San Francisco-based waste to energy company announced plans to expand its project, partnering with six total farms in the region.

The ‘Yellowjacket’ project will extract methane from 265,000 gallons of dairy manure per day and convert it into renewable natural gas (RNG) and other useful by-products.

Farms participating in the Yellowjacket RNG project include Boxler Dairy Farm of Varysburg, Wyoming County; Lamb Lakeshore Dairy of Wilson, Niagara County; Lamb Farms of Oakfield, Genesee County; Lawnhurst of Stanley, Ontario County; Swiss Valley Farms of Warsaw, Wyoming County and Zuber Farms of Byron, Genesee County.

Once the planned installation of the biogas upgrading equipment is complete at all the farms in early 2021, the project is expected to produce 305,000 MMBtu of RNG annually, making it Brightmark’s largest RNG project to date. Before the Yellowjacket project, the anaerobic digesters on the farms produced electricity that was used onsite by the farms and transmitted to the local electric grid. However, some of the digesters are more than 10 years old and had begun to cost more to maintain and operate than they generated in value.

Don Jensen, owner of Lawnhurst Farms, said: “We’re really committed to protecting the environment and doing what’s best for the local community. We are excited to have the opportunity to partner with Brightmark to convert from generating electricity to producing RNG. This process will greatly reduce operational costs and with this technology increase, the return of investment.”

“Were excited to expand our footprint in western New York through the expansion of the Yellowjacket RNG project,” said Bob Powell, CEO of Brightmark Energy. “We’re proud to partner with farmers who are on the leading edge of sustainability so that they can improve their bottom lines while being good stewards of their local environment.”

The Yellowjacket project is expected to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from the manure processed at this facility at a rate of 117,783 tonnes per year, equivalent to planting 152,824 acres of forest annually.



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