In a free public seminar at 3:30 PM on April 10, in room 1115 of the Wisconsin Energy Institute, UW–Madison associate professor of biological systems engineering Troy Runge will give a talk on anaerobic digestion, energy, and water quality.
Livestock farms continue to increase in herd size, creating ever growing quantities of manure produced by the animals in smaller areas, and thus posing challenges to the traditional land application methods. Mismanaged land application of manure can pose serious environmental risks through accidental spills at farms and through leaching, and run-off after land-application. Additionally farmers must navigate public concerns from manure application ranging from odor-issues to traffic accidents and even air-borne pathogen concerns. Beyond the myriad of negative issues associated with manure, it may also be thought of as an economic resource though use as fertilizer, as an energy source through anaerobic digestion, and even as a feedstock to be processed into useful products to be used on-farm or sold. During this seminar, we will delve into several aspects of manure-processing systems which can help farmers create bioenergy, facilitate nutrient utilization, recycle water, and dispose safely of the animal waste, while reducing environmental impact of eutrophication, and pathogen exposure. Research, development and implementation of these systems can help make our farms more profitable while reducing air and water pollution.