Publications (2)0 Total impact
ABSTRACT: Standard analysis of the economic feasibility of on-farm biogas energy production tend to emphasize primarily on direct financial benefits to farmers, and abstracts from the nonmarket cobenefits associated with anaerobic digestion of livestock manure and other biomass feedstock. This shortcoming of the standard feasibility analysis raises a fundamental question: How is the economic feasibility of on-farm anaerobic biogas energy production affected by the associated nonpecuniary cobenefits? Incorporating key nonmarket cobenefits from biogas energy production extends the standard economic feasibility analysis, and provides important insights. When nonmarket cobenefits were excluded, on-farm biogas energy production was generally not financially feasible for the dairy and swine farm size ranges studied (except for 600- and 800-sow farms). Overall, results of the financial feasibility analysis did not change compared to a base scenario (without nonmarket cobenefits) when an estimated annual total nonmarket cobenefits of CND$5000 was incorporated into the analysis, for both dairy and swine farms. Biogas energy production was generally financially viable for small-size dairy (i.e., 50-cow) and swine (i.e., 200-sow) farms when the nonmarket cobenefits were valued at CND$15,000 (or higher). Improvements in financial feasibility were more dramatic for dairy than for swine farms.
Energy Policy. 02/2009;
ABSTRACT: The economic feasibility of on-farm biogas energy production was investigated for swine and dairy operations under Nova Scotia, Canada farming conditions, using net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR), and payback period (PP) economic decision criteria. In addition, the effects of selected environmental and “green” energy policy schemes on co-generation of on-farm biogas energy production and other co-benefits from anaerobic digestion of livestock manure were investigated. Cost-efficiencies arising from economies of scale for on-farm anaerobic biogas production were found for swine farms, and less so for dairy production systems. Without incentive schemes, on-farm biogas energy production was not economically feasible across the farm size ranges studied, except for 600- and 800-sow operations. Among single policy schemes investigated, green energy credit policy schemes generated the highest financial returns, compared to cost-share and low-interest loan schemes. Combinations of multiple policies that included cost-share and green energy credit incentive schemes generated the most improvement in financial feasibility of on-farm biogas energy production, for both swine and dairy operations.
University of Guelph