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Canada greenlights new resources for farmers who want to discover biogas

11 March 2021

Canada's Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food announced funding of up to $116,800 for the Canadian Biogas Association (CBA) to accelerate sustainable agricultural development.

The Minister also met with Jennifer Green, Executive Director of the Canadian Biogas Association, and Rob McKinlay of Harcolm Farms in Woodstock, Ontario, who installed a factory built mini digester system on his 72-head dairy farm. They discussed the benefits of biogas, how biogas installments work, and the educational resources available through the CBA's new website.

With funding of up to $28,800 from the Agricultural Clean Technology Program, the CBA launched a campaign to help farmers learn more about biogas. As part of the campaign, the CBA launched FarmingBiogas.ca, a new website with resources to help farmers evaluate the opportunities of biogas, including a self-assessment tool, answers to key questions, profiles of on-farm biogas plants in Canada and more. It also includes a checklist and links to biogas equipment suppliers and technical advisors, acting as a one-stop-shop to help farmers get started.

Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau said, "Canadian agricultural producers ensure the health of our lands and continue to innovate to reduce the environmental impact of their practices. Biogas systems provide them an innovative way to manage their waste, diversify their incomes and grow their businesses, all while reducing their GHG emissions. With the tools offered by the Canadian Biogas Association, farmers will have access to relevant information to help them better understand the opportunities available to them in biogas and renewable natural gas."

On-farm biogas systems can help farmers cut greenhouse gas emissions, provide sustainable sources of energy and offer many other environmental advantages. They can also generate additional sources of income and create opportunities for the farm's next generation.

Biogas can be captured and purified to create renewable natural gas, which is fully interchangeable to replace conventional natural gas. The CBA also received $88,000 under the Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program to identify clusters of agricultural resources across Canada and assess the potential for renewable natural gas development by region. The CBA will use this information to create a guide to inform agricultural stakeholders about new and emerging renewable natural gas opportunities, encouraging collaborations to develop more sustainable energy systems in Canada.

Jennifer Green, Executive Director of the Canadian Biogas Association said, “there are already 61 farms and agri-food businesses across Canada successfully capturing biogas and turning it into a valuable clean energy resource. Studies show that there is the opportunity for much more. With the support of AAFC, we can accelerate further uptake of farm biogas projects and, in so doing, cut Canada's carbon emissions and support our agricultural communities.”

Canadian farmers are important partners in the fight against climate change. By adopting sustainable technologies and practices, farmers can reduce their environmental footprint and capture new economic opportunities.

Background information

  • Biogas is a renewable source of methane gas created when organic matter like livestock manure, crop residue and food waste breaks down in an oxygen-free environment. This process is referred to as Anaerobic Digestion (AD).
  • The Agricultural Clean Technology Program supports research, development and adoption of clean technologies through investments in and promotion of precision agriculture and agri-based bioproducts.
  • The Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program (CASPP) supports projects that address national or sector-wide priorities that help industry address emerging issues and capitalize on opportunities.
  • Established in 2008, the Canadian Biogas Association is a not-for-profit, member-driven organization with a mission to advance the development of the biogas and renewable natural gas industry in Canada.


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