What is Anaerobic Digestion?

Anaerobic Digestion is the natural process we rely on to turn organic material into renewable energy. This series of natural steps breaks down organic material in the absence of oxygen resulting in the creation of biogas which can be used to generate electricity and heat, or be further processed into renewable natural gas and transportation fuel.

Organic material such as food waste, fats/oils/greases, biobased lubricants, livestock manure, municipal wastewater solids, and various other organic waste streams are used to create biogas under controlled conditions. The digestion process, and production of biogas, occurs around the clock, is all natural, and doesn’t require harmful environmental chemicals.

In our anaerobic digestion system, the waste-to-energy process begins at the receiving tank, where solid and liquid biomass is pumped into an equalization tank and solids are “chewed” before entering the digester. Here, the biomass is digested by the microorganisms which produce methane gas. Anaerobic bacteria thrive at temperatures ranging from about 95 F to 105 F, which means the digester tanks must be monitored for temperature, as well as acid levels and a good balance of solids and liquids.

In addition to recycling waste and creating cleaner, renewable energy, the anaerobic digestion process leaves behind organic material that can be used as a rich soil amendment. This liquid material can replace chemical fertilizers, improving soil quality organically and safely.