DRIVE: California's Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program

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PIXLEY BIOGAS, LLC

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Pixley Biogas built an anaerobic digestion (AD) facility adjacent to the existing Calgren Renewable Fuels biorefinery in Pixley, California. The biogas facility processes over 80,000 gallons of manure per day from the nearby 4J Farms Dairy reducing carbon dioxide that comes from cow manure. After 22 days the water in the digester goes back to the dairy to grow corn and wheat for the cows, the fluffy solid waste can be turned into cow bedding or mulch, and the biogas that is produced goes to the Calgren facility. Calgren, a 58 million gallon-per-year ethanol production facility, uses the biogas to displace up to 6 percent of the natural gas used to fire their combined heat and power plant.

Pixley Biogas anaerobic digestion facility. Photo by permission of Ryan Krauter of 4Creeks Creative The biogas facility is expected to produce 160 mm BTU of biogas daily. Access to a local supply of biogas, combined with improved operational efficiencies, will reduce Calgren’s natural gas consumption. and lower the carbon intensity of the ethanol produced at the biorefinery, making it the lowest carbon ethanol produced in California at commercial scale.

Grant Amount

$4,672,798.

Match Funding

$6,161,771 from the project participants.

Project Benefits

The carbon dioxide reductions from using less natural gas and recycling cow manure are the equivalent of removing 4,200 cars from the road. Hydrogen sulfide is removed from the biogas, helping improve air quality. The biogas produced from the Pixley project results in 17 percent less greenhouse gases than what is released by other California ethanol manufacturers.

Pixley Biogas reclaims between 30 - 185 million gallons of water used annually in the digester to remove manure solids. The odor-free water can then be recycled for farm uses. This project will serve as a model for other dairy farmers who wish to adopt advanced manure handling systems. Pixley Biogas created 23 jobs during construction and an additional two full-time permanent jobs at its partner business, Calgren Renewable Fuels.

Grant Agreement Number: ARV-10-053

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