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Re: [hreg] Methane digesters

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  • Garth & Kim Travis
    Greetings, From my reading and talking to others on the internet, I gather that Nepal has over 100,000 methane digester s functioning and in daily use. The
    Message 1 of 5 , Jan 11, 2007
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      Greetings,

      From my reading and talking to others on the internet, I gather that
      Nepal has over 100,000 methane digester's functioning and in daily use.
      The plans on how to build and operate one are on the website
      www.journeytoforever.org in the small farms library.

      I am hoping to build a small methane digester this summer to get
      acquainted with the details, then a larger one to give us biofuel for a
      back up generator etc. Being a farm, to me this really makes sense.
      Especially since pulling the methane off the manure robs nothing of
      nutrients. The effluence from the digester goes into the compost pile
      and back on my land so it is very sustainable.

      The largest problem I have with most of the information on the internet
      about methane production is that the models use large plastic bag, set
      in the ground. I know how well this would work in Texas, fire ants can
      eat through plastic in record time.

      Methane is not dangerous, at least not any more dangerous than propane,
      unless it gets mixed with oxygen. Then it is no longer flammable, it
      becomes explosive.

      I have seen a home that had a RV toilet that was directly connected to a
      methane digester. The gas was piped directly to the kitchen to cook
      with. While this may have been very convenient, I don't believe it was
      the safest set up. I can understand wanting to get rid of the buckets
      of humanure, but there has to be a better way.

      Bright Blessings,
      Kim

      Shafer, Mark B wrote:
      > I have had the same thought.
      >
      > Mother Earth News had an article about providing low income families in
      > Mexico with an energy source via a biodigested(big plastic tube where
      > waste is dumped in and methane siphoned off for cooking and heating).
      >
      > Popular mechanics has an article about a dairy farmer running equipment
      > off cow waste.
      >
      > A beer producer in Colorado uses the gas from the fermentation process
      > to lower their energy bill.
      >
      > Years ago they use to burn off natural gas so that they could extract
      > just the oil. Now natural gas is expensive.
      >
      > Maybe some day some one will pay us for our waste.
      >
      >
      > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] *On Behalf Of
      > *William
      > *Sent:* Thursday, January 11, 2007 7:50 AM
      > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups.com
      > *Subject:* [hreg] Methane digesters
      >
      > Hello all,
      > Have not posted in a while. Happy RE-new-ABLE year!
      > I have been doing some reading and wondering, below are some links to
      > articles i've read. Does anyone have information regarding methane
      > production? It seems as though if we combine a waste problem - with a
      > means to produce an energy source it would be a win-win situation?
      > Taking the land areas off the map for ethanol use and back to food
      > crops, where they should be. It doesn't seem impossible to change our
      > waste treatment facilities into methane producing facilities! Looking
      > forward to your thoughts. Bill Stange
      > http://www.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/methanedigestion3.htm
      > <http://www.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/methanedigestion3.htm>
      > http://www.newfarm.org/news/2004/1004/1001/meth_plant.shtml
      > <http://www.newfarm.org/news/2004/1004/1001/meth_plant.shtml>
      > http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5335635 <http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5335635>
      >
      >
    • Edward Kramer
      Its not as easy as you think. The average horse or cow can make maybe a 1 cu foot a day of methane, which is much. The biggest problem is heat control. The
      Message 2 of 5 , Jan 11, 2007
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        Its not as easy as you think. The average horse or cow can make maybe a 1 cu foot a day of  methane, which is much. The biggest problem is heat control. The digestor must be maintained at a temp of around 95 degrees-That will require more energy input than output in most areas. I am sure the chicken factory farms in Arkansas looked at the dynamics and decided that the cost benefit wasn't there. now you have the state of Oklahaoma suing the state of Arkansas for contamination of  water sources. Poultry waste is the best sourcefor methane, but the quantities don't justify the means.
         
        Edward  Kramer
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Thursday, January 11, 2007 8:37 AM
        Subject: RE: [hreg] Methane digesters

        I have had the same thought. 
         
        Mother Earth News had an article about providing low income families in Mexico with an energy source via  a biodigested( big plastic tube where waste is dumped in and methane siphoned off for cooking and heating).
         
        Popular mechanics has an article about a dairy farmer running equipment off cow waste. 
         
        A beer producer in Colorado uses the gas from the fermentation process to lower their energy bill.
         
        Years ago they use to burn off natural gas so that they could extract just the oil.  Now natural gas is expensive. 
         
        Maybe some day some one will pay us for our waste.
         


        From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of William
        Sent: Thursday, January 11, 2007 7:50 AM
        To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
        Subject: [hreg] Methane digesters

        Hello all,
        Have not posted in a while. Happy RE-new-ABLE year!
        I have been doing some reading and wondering, below are some links to
        articles i've read. Does anyone have information regarding methane
        production? It seems as though if we combine a waste problem - with a
        means to produce an energy source it would be a win-win situation?
        Taking the land areas off the map for ethanol use and back to food
        crops, where they should be. It doesn't seem impossible to change our
        waste treatment facilities into methane producing facilities! Looking
        forward to your thoughts. Bill Stange
        http://www.green- trust.org/ 2000/biofuel/ methanedigestion 3.htm
        http://www.newfarm. org/news/ 2004/1004/ 1001/meth_ plant.shtml
        http://www.msnbc. msn.com/id/ 5335635

      • Garth & Kim Travis
        Greetings, I never said anything about easy, as a matter of fact I said I would be building a small one to get acquainted with the process. The processors in
        Message 3 of 5 , Jan 11, 2007
        • 0 Attachment
          Greetings,
          I never said anything about easy, as a matter of fact I said I would be
          building a small one to get acquainted with the process. The processors
          in Nepal are built for family farms, not agribusiness. I am aware of
          the problems with temperature, but also the problems of scale. Chicken
          factories have a totally different set of values from a sustainable
          farm, what we think is worth doing, agribusiness doesn't. Cost benefit
          to a sustainable farm is very different from agribusiness. We are
          concerned with more than just dollars and we don't use paid help. If I
          believed the statements of agribusiness, I wouldn't have a farm. They
          are forever telling me I can't do what I do, do.
          Bright Blessings,
          Kim

          Edward Kramer wrote:
          > Its not as easy as you think. The average horse or cow can make maybe a
          > 1 cu foot a day of methane, which is much. The biggest problem is heat
          > control. The digestor must be maintained at a temp of around 95
          > degrees-That will require more energy input than output in most areas. I
          > am sure the chicken factory farms in Arkansas looked at the dynamics and
          > decided that the cost benefit wasn't there. now you have the state of
          > Oklahaoma suing the state of Arkansas for contamination of water
          > sources. Poultry waste is the best sourcefor methane, but the quantities
          > don't justify the means.
          >
          > Edward Kramer
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > *From:* Shafer, Mark B <mailto:mark.b.shafer@...>
          > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com>
          > *Sent:* Thursday, January 11, 2007 8:37 AM
          > *Subject:* RE: [hreg] Methane digesters
          >
          > I have had the same thought.
          >
          > Mother Earth News had an article about providing low income families
          > in Mexico with an energy source via a biodigested(big plastic tube
          > where waste is dumped in and methane siphoned off for cooking and
          > heating).
          >
          > Popular mechanics has an article about a dairy farmer running
          > equipment off cow waste.
          >
          > A beer producer in Colorado uses the gas from the fermentation
          > process to lower their energy bill.
          >
          > Years ago they use to burn off natural gas so that they could
          > extract just the oil. Now natural gas is expensive.
          >
          > Maybe some day some one will pay us for our waste.
          >
          >
          > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
          > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] *On
          > Behalf Of *William
          > *Sent:* Thursday, January 11, 2007 7:50 AM
          > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > *Subject:* [hreg] Methane digesters
          >
          > Hello all,
          > Have not posted in a while. Happy RE-new-ABLE year!
          > I have been doing some reading and wondering, below are some links to
          > articles i've read. Does anyone have information regarding methane
          > production? It seems as though if we combine a waste problem - with a
          > means to produce an energy source it would be a win-win situation?
          > Taking the land areas off the map for ethanol use and back to food
          > crops, where they should be. It doesn't seem impossible to change our
          > waste treatment facilities into methane producing facilities! Looking
          > forward to your thoughts. Bill Stange
          > http://www.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/methanedigestion3.htm
          > <http://www.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/methanedigestion3.htm>
          > http://www.newfarm.org/news/2004/1004/1001/meth_plant.shtml
          > <http://www.newfarm.org/news/2004/1004/1001/meth_plant.shtml>
          > http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5335635
          > <http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5335635>
          >
          >
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