Will alert environmentalists, Greens, to renewable value , emissions reduction, organics
Napier advanced agri process technology specialist TEKAM is bringing to New Zealand Peter Franke a world leader in turning agricultural waste into electricity and in the process ridding farms of the effluent which increasingly threatens drinking water.
Mr Franke is the founder of Germany’s Bio Ost which is a leading developer of closed loop systems which collect effluent, notably the dairy version, and convert it into energy for refrigeration and other milking systems, and also for distribution into the national grid.
These closed loop effluent-to-power systems are commonplace in Germany where installers are offered generous subsidies to install them.
The other Baltic nation leading in closed loop effluent-to-power is Denmark.
The Danish government has set a short term target of up to 50% of livestock manure to be made into this green energy supply.
Power derived from biogas and fed into the national grid is exempt from taxation in Denmark.
Mr Franke will advise on the installation and commissioning of on-farm plants and will outline returns to users in terms of energy recovery and in obtaining fertiliser by-products.
He is expected also to talk to local government officials about the value of the plants in reducing runoff contamination threats and also how the plants reduce methane emissions.
Similarly he will outline the benefit in which weed seeds and pathogens are killed during the biomass digestion process, thus lessening the farm need for synthetic herbicides and pesticides.
Ken Evans of TEKAM said that in his New Zealand visit Mr Franke will focus exclusively on discussing the technology and the cost-benefits of the on-farm bio gas installations.
Mr Evans’ TEKAM organisation is working in conjunction with Napier Engineering & Contracting on introducing the effluent-to-energy technology to New Zealand.
He noted that he did not anticipate any discussion of introducing state incentives, subsidies for these plants such as exist in Europe.
Mr Franke instead he said would focus on the practical evidence of his company’s world wide effluent-to-energy installations.
The problem in New Zealand of effluent finding its way into ground water would though be a priority topic, he said.
According to Mr Evans, New Zealand had been an early developer of dairy waste into energy conversion systems. But these early plants along with their associated research and development had been abandoned when the millennialist energy crisis scare failed to materialise.