Municipality of the District of Digby

Anaerobic Digester

Anaerobic Digesters have been gaining popularity in North America over recent years because they offer an economically and environmentally sound alternative to traditional bio-waste disposal practices with the added benefit of being a source of renewable energy. Anaerobic Digestion (AD) refers to a process by which biodegradable materials (such as animal farm waste, green bin and other food waste) are broken down by microorganisms in the absence of oxygen. This process yields multiple useful products, the most notable being a nutrient-rich digestate that can be used as fertilizer, and biogas, a gaseous mixture mostly composed of methane and carbon dioxide. This biogas can then be used as fuel for electricity generation.

The large number of mink farms located in Southwestern Nova Scotia means a unique opportunity for anaerobic digestion and subsequent biogas production; mink farm waste is being used in combination with green bin waste as an excellent feedstock for an anaerobic digester located outside of Weymouth at the Southwest Eco Energy Ltd (SEEL) facility. This creates a source of local renewable electricity (biogas) and also helps reduce the impact that animal farming has on the area.

 

alt(Photo Source: www.ionacapital.co.uk)

 

The Municipality is currently working on a project that will take biogas produced from the digester and use it to generate electricity. This electricity will then be sold to the local electrical grid, generating revenue under the Community Feed-In Tariff program (ComFIT). Such revenue could lower or offset property taxes for local residents in the future.