Maryland -based BioEnergy DevCo recently announced that they have raised $106 million dollars from a new fund called Newlight Partners to develop anaerobic digestion facilities. The facilities create renewable gas and soil amendments by transforming organic waste that would otherwise be sent to a landfill.
From AgFunder News:
“If you’d have asked me about three years ago about whether it’s hard to get investors excited about anaerobic digestion, I would have said yes,” Bioenergy DevCo CEO Shawn Kreloff told AFN. “Part of what we have been doing is educating the market and I believe the market has come around.”
Organic waste is traditionally either incinerated and emitted as an environmental pollutant, or left in an already crowded landfill where it rots and releases methane, a harmful greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. Anaerobic digestion, a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly technology, uses what the company describes as a proven natural microbiological process to break down organic waste materials and create renewable natural gas, which can either be injected into the energy grid where it burns cleanly or compressed as natural gas and used for transportation fuel.
“What we have built basically is a cow’s stomach on an industrial scale using the same bacteria as cows,” Kreloff explains. “The four-chambered stomach takes organic material through four series of processing with four sets of microbes that ends up with methanogenesis.”
The process also yields a ‘digestate,’ a soil amendment with the same organic and stormwater management capability as compost. The company has a variety of options for monetizing this resource including pelletizing it for potting soil or mixing it with sand to create topsoil.
Thank you to BioEnergy DevCo for sponsoring our General Session “Clean and Green: Charting Maryland’s Energy Future” at MACo’s Winter Conference.
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