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Pork CRC Opens One–Stop Gas Shop

by 5m Editor
29 May 2012, at 7:20am

AUSTRALIA - Launching its Bioenergy Support Program at the Pan Pacific Pork Expo 2012 marks the first step of an internationally acclaimed commitment by the CRC for High Integrity Australian Pork to reduce the carbon footprint of Australia’s pork producers to one kilogram of carbon dioxide per one kilogram of meat.

With an Australian Pork Limited life cycle assessment having indicated more than two thirds of greenhouse gas emissions were generated from piggery effluent ponds and with more than 90 per cent of Australia’s pork production utilising ponds to manage effluent, a significant opportunity existed for industry to capture emissions for mitigation or utilisation.

According to Pork CRC CEO, Dr Roger Campbell, methane capture, utilisation and flaring, would be some of the most effective steps in realising the CRC’s carbon target.

“As part of Pork CRC Subprogram 4C, Carbon Neutral Pork Production, this project prioritises production, capture and use of methane from piggery effluent treated in covered anaerobic lagoons,“ he said.

Dr Campbell said that specific efforts towards carbon neutral pork production would involve novel research to maximise methane production from effluent ponds so that gas collection and use can be made more economically viable.

“Alternative approaches to waste management will also be assessed to develop solid waste pork production systems that mitigate carbon outputs,“ he said.

Despite Australia’s long distances and issues with biosecurity, feedstocks, restrictive policies and standards and relatively high labour and component costs inhibiting uptake of biogas technology, interest is accelerating due to due to lower cost technologies, rising energy costs and the introduction of the Carbon Farming Initiative and carbon tax.

The Pork CRC Bioenergy Support Program, headed by Dr Stephan Tait, a professional engineer chartered with the Institution of Chemical Engineers and a research fellow at the Advanced Water Management Centre, University of Queensland, will be, effectively, a ‘one stop shop’ for Australian pork producers to find out everything they need to know to better manage piggery effluent and reduce their carbon footprint.

The Program will provide independent advice on low-cost biogas options; details of suppliers; independent reviews of feasibility assessments; information on available funding and much more. A steering committee of the Pork CRC Bioenergy Support Program includes:

Chief Investigator – Stephan Tait, University of Queensland
Pork CRC - Rob Wilson
APL - Janine Price
FSA Consulting - Eugene McGahan
DEEDI Qld - Alan Skerman
Producer - Tom Smith, Kia-ora
Producer - Ian Connaughton, Don KRC
Producer – Ken Cameron, CHM
Producer – Dugald Walker, Blantyre Farms

Producers and other industry stakeholders wishing to be involved or enquire, are invited to contact Dr Stephan Tait, Mob 0466 699 817 or email [email protected].