Rethinking Biogas: An Emerging Energy Source in the Midwest
Free on-demand webcast (originally broadcast Wednesday, September 29, 2010)
Presented by Peter Taglia, Staff Scientist, Clean Wisconsin
The Midwest contains the world's largest concentration of productive agriculture and food processing, and produces enormous amounts of animal and food waste. The Midwest is also rich in woody biomass and other forestry resources that can be sustainably harvested.
However, only a tiny portion of these wastes is converted to biogas, a renewable substitute for natural gas that reduces fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas pollution. For agricultural waste alone, the Midwest's 55 anaerobic digesters pale in comparison to Germany's, which exceed 4,000 despite its significantly smaller agricultural output.
This webinar explores the potential for this renewable energy resource to grow by examining biogas sources, conversion technologies, and outputs together with energy policies needed to support them. With appropriate policy and deployment, biogas can become a substantial source of energy in the Midwest.
Download Peter Taglia's report Biogas: Rethinking the Midwest's Potential (pdf).
Also visit the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Biomass Energy Basics for a thorough introduction to the concept of bioenergy.
About the presenterPeter Taglia is a professional geologist who is currently working in numerous aspects of climate change mitigation with an emphasis on electrical generation, terrestrial and geological carbon sequestration and biofuels analysis. Peter has done extensive work with Governor Doyle's Task Force on Global Warming, the Midwestern Governors Association and the Wisconsin Legislative Council.
Prior to Clean Wisconsin, Peter worked as an environmental consultant, conducting environmental investigations, preparing environmental remediation plans and impact statements. Peter holds a B.A. in environmental geology from the University of Montana and a M.S. in hydrogeology from the UW-Madison.