One dairy farm in Kewaunee County is taking a big step forward in reducing their carbon footprint.
Today, Ponderosa Dairy, their sister farm Dairy Dreams and DTE Energy broke ground on a natural gas facility at the Pagel Farm in Kewaunee.
The natural gas facility will create renewable natural gas that is generated by cow manure. It will be pumped into an underground anaerobic digester where the methane released from the manure will be captured. The methane is then refined to meet pipeline quality standards, trucked to a central location and injected into a natural gas transmission line. This will ultimately be used for alternative vehicle fuel.
For many years, Page’s Ponderosa Dairy Farm has used generators to produce electricity, but they have become inefficient and uneconomical. But now with the natural gas facility, they will be able to use cow manure to create energy that is useable across the farm.
According to the Michigan based company, DTE, they estimate that it will reduce yearly greenhouse gas emissions by an amount equal to removing 9,200 vehicles from the road and saving the equivalent of burning more than 4.8 million gallons of gasoline.
Two other farms in the area are also taking part in the renewable natural gas movement.
Construction and operations of the facility is expected to add almost 30 construction jobs and four full time operating jobs for the community.
Construction will be complete early next year.