Farmers turning cow manure into natural gas

June 22, 2020

What began as a plan to lower a farmer’s monthly electric bill has turned into a $200 million venture to turn poop into profits.

The Washington Post spoke to Randy Jordan, a fifth-generation dairy farmer, who started a company that turned the methane gas produced by cow manure into natural gas.

A single 1,400-pound dairy cow produces about 27 tons of manure per year. Livestock and crop production make up about 10% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.

Jordan and four other farmers met with energy consultant Bill Jorgenson to build a biodigester business called AGreen Energy LLC that operated on five Massachusetts farms to produce natural gas and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Soon, the company grew through mergers and began partnerships with other New England dairy farms.

Eventually, Dominion Energy invested $200 million to expand the manure methane operations to Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Georgia and Nevada.

You can read more about Jordan’s business and the economy behind biodigesters here.

Farmers turning cow manure into natural gas