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Cambridgeshire Farm Could Power National Grid From New AD Site

People in Cambridgeshire might be able to source their power from a local farm if its plans to build an anaerobic digester (AD) on its site are approved by the local authority.

Collmart Growers of Pondersbridge has submitted its proposals to Huntingdonshire District Council to request the approval to build a biomass facility opposite its packing and storage site in The Drove, according to Hunts Post.

If this is given the go ahead, it will be able to convert the waste produced on the farm into usable gas and heat, with the help of tank breather valves in the AD machinery. The anaerobic digestion process helps to capture the heat and gas produced by rotting crops, and transform these into energy, which could then be used to supply power to the rest of the farm.

Its application stated it can use 5,500 tonnes of onion waste, 6,650 tonnes of straw, 5,500 tonnes of sugar beet pulp and 7,000 tonnes of maize, which it can attain either as a by-product of onion processing or through its crop production on Collmart Growers land.

“The process will also produce 16,000 tonnes of digestate per annum,” the report revealed, while it will keep disruption to the public as low as possible.

A spokesperson stated the nearest residence, which is less than 300m away, will be impacted on a “relatively small scale”. Otherwise, the AD process is silent and does not produce an unpleasant odour.

Indeed, it could help generate energy for the local public, as the site is expected to produce 3.5 megawatts of biomethane and 0.6 megawatts of heat.

A dairy farm in Oregan, USA, wants to open a similar facility, by processing 3,100 cubic feet per minute of biogas from the manure created by the farm’s 5,000 cows.