Abbotsford home to Canada’s first on-farm cow-powered dairy
June 29th, 2011
Category: Technology & Innovation
June 29, 2011
Abbotsford home to Canada’s first on-farm cow-powered dairy
ABBOTSFORD – Energy and Mines Minister Rich Coleman today helped to commission B.C.’s first small-scale on-farm anaerobic digester at Abbotsford’s Bakerview EcoDairy. The technology converts cow manure into clean renewable energy and is now connected to B.C.’s electricity grid.
“This project is a first in Canada and is a good demonstration of the creativity and innovation of our province,” said Minister Coleman. “I congratulate Bakerview EcoDairy for their entrepreneurial spirit and leadership in sustainability. This is a good step forward for the energy and agricultural industries in B.C.”
The anaerobic digester will generate up to 60,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually – enough to power 20 electric vehicles a year. It will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions, odour from manure and the amount of manure that can run-off into local water supplies.
“I am proud to see clean, on-site generation for our demonstration dairy,” said Bill Vanderkooi, president of Bakerview EcoDairy and CEO of Nutriva Group. “We pride ourselves on being a responsible and sustainable organization and I appreciate the opportunity we have to educate the public on environmentally and animal-friendly innovations in a fully-operational farm.”
The digester not only generates clean electricity but also creates heat, fertilizer and cow bedding for the farm. The system heats cow manure and captures the byproduct – biogas. The biogas is used by a generator to create electricity.
“We are pleased to support this project. It’s a great example of cost-effective, sustainable energy generation that adds to the growing bioenergy sector in B.C.,” said Michael Weedon, executive director of the BC Bioenergy Network.
“This is a ground-breaking project for our province and will demonstrate to other dairy farmers the environmental and economic benefits of on-site energy generation on a proportional scale,” said Garnet Etsell, Chair, BC Agriculture Council, on behalf of the Environmental Farm Plan Program.
The project was funded in part through a $240,000 grant from the BC Bioenergy Network, a $70,000 grant from the Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) Program and an $80,000 grant from BC Hydro’s Power Smart Technology Demonstration Fund. The Power Smart fund is available for projects that demonstrate innovative and emerging technologies that can be used in “real life” situations to conserve electricity.
Other sustainable initiatives at the Bakerview EcoDairy include a natural ventilation system that uses the forces of wind and buoyancy to deliver fresh air into the building; an energy efficient lighting system; automated atmospheric controls that detect changes in the internal climate and automatically adjust windows, curtains and fans; and a water conservation system that collects fresh rainwater from the roof of one of the buildings to irrigate the grounds and the green roof on the barn.
About The Nutriva Group (Bakerview EcoDairy Ltd.)
The Nutriva Group is a multi-faceted, innovative group of agri-businesses located in Abbotsford, B.C. The Group focuses on developing and managing whole food value chains that begin with progressive, environmentally-responsible farm practices and end with functional food products that embody natural nutrition innovation to improve the health and well-being of Canadians.
The Nutriva Group consists of three main business units that include Nutritech, Bakerview and Nutrifoods. The Bakerview EcoDairy is home to, an eco-friendly demonstration dairy, animal exhibits, Vitala cows and chickens, the Nutrifoods Farm Market, Bradner Milk Transport, Diverse Byproducts, and the Nutriva Group offices.
About the BC Bioenergy Network
Established in April 2008 with a $25 million grant from the B.C. government, the BC Bioenergy Network (BCBN) is an industry-led association that acts as a catalyst for deploying near-term bioenergy technologies and organizing mission-driven research for the development and demonstration of sustainable to build a world class bioenergy capability in B.C. For more information about the BCBN, visit www.bcbioenergy.ca.
About BC Hydro
Fifty years ago, British Columbians turned to BC Hydro to build the clean electricity system they count on to power B.C.'s economy, create jobs in every region, and keep the lights on. Now, BC Hydro is building again for the next 50 years. B.C. continues to grow and so has the need for more electricity. That’s why BC Hydro is building, renewing, and encouraging conservation to meet today’s needs and those of future generations. In 2011, BC Hydro is celebrating 50 years of providing power for British Columbians, and inviting them to help prepare for the next 50 years.
About environmental farm plan/ Agricultural Research & Development Corporation
The Growing Forward EFP Program (a federal, provincial, territorial initiative) is delivered through ARDCorp on behalf of the BC Ministry of Agriculture (AGRI) in co-operation with Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and other partner agencies. Environmental farm planning is a no charge, confidential, voluntary process available to producers to identify both environmental strengths and potential risks on their farms. As appropriate, it includes a prioritized action plan to reduce the risks. The producer then may be eligible to apply for cost-sharing incentives under the Beneficial Management Practices (BMP) Program to address the environmental risks that have been identified in the completed farm plan. Trained Planning Advisors are available throughout BC to assist producers through this process.
For more information, contact:
BC Hydro Media Relations
Sandy Ferguson, BC Bioenergy Networkc.
Tanya Curtis, Nutriva Group
Heather Carriere, Environmental Farm Plan Program
Minister Rich Coleman, conservation, Dave Cobb, Power Smart, Northwest Transmission Line, Interior to Lower Mainland, Greg Reimer, economic development, Mica Expansion Project , infrastructure, impact benefit agreement, generation, Mica, First Nations, Site C, Bev Van Ruyven, transmission, energy efficiency, clean energy, environmental review