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Measuring the results of a workshop on installing anaerobic digesters on smaller livestock farms

  • Rick Welsh (a1), Michaele E. Webb (a2), Stefan Grimberg (a3) and Shane Rogers (a3)

It is accepted generally that anaerobic digesters (AD) are efficacious technologies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from livestock operations (Pronto and Gooch, 2009). In addition, AD technology has a number of other potential benefits including: energy production for use on the farm and for sale, separation of manure solids for ease of use or export off-farm, pathogen reduction leading to healthier labor and herd outcomes and odor control. It is also clear that in the USA, research and extension efforts, including public financing of AD technology installations, have disproportionally been focused on larger farms- e.g., dairy farms with at least 500 milking cows. The latter has begun to change as more resources are being invested in AD technology for smaller livestock farms. We present the results of a pre and post survey implemented at four workshops on small-scale AD technology for livestock farmers in northeastern New York State. Results indicate that information presented shifted farmers’ attitudes such that they viewed AD technology as not overly complex; and, they became less interested in selling generated surplus power off-farm.

Corresponding author
Author for correspondence: Rick Welsh, E-mail:
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Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems
  • ISSN: 1742-1705
  • EISSN: 1742-1713
  • URL: /core/journals/renewable-agriculture-and-food-systems
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