The Case For Renewable Energy From Agricultural Waste

Aine Anderson, Neha Mehta

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Abstract

In some locations across Northern Ireland (NI) there is too much manure material and associated nutrients produced by livestock operations to be sustainably applied to farmland. In addition to this, nutrient measurements from soil and river systems across NI indicate characteristics of surplus manure nutrient application, as the pollution of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems has been linked to the overloading of nitrogen and phosphorus on agricultural land. The existence of surplus manure material, opens up an opportunity locally, as excess organic material can be re-routed to facilities of anaerobic digestion (AD) to increase the production of biomethane for renewable energy. When manure material is redirected to AD facilities for the production of biogas, this also offers increased control over nutrient and carbon management. This collaborative research project aims to support the increased use of manure as an agricultural feedstock for AD, to produce renewable energy, improve nutrient management and decarbonize heat and agriculture in NI.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jul 2021

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