Case Study: Biogas Recovery – Smithfield Foods, Inc.
Smithfield Foods, Inc. implemented biogas recovery and used biogas as a fuel source in two 700 HP boilers at its Tar Heel Facility in North Carolina. The system typically reduces the facility’s natural gas use by 10 percent. The project has added benefits:
- Combusting the biogas, as opposed to venting it to the atmosphere, reduces the facility’s carbon emissions.
- Covering anaerobic digesters and capturing biogas for energy recovery reduces odors.
- Storm water intrusion from covered anaerobic lagoons provides wastewater treatment savings.
The system includes a synthetically lined and covered anaerobic basin with gas collection piping, blowers, condensate system, gas pipeline, flare and dedicated biogas fuel trains for the boilers. The boilers also operate using natural gas. This technology has been in use at the Tar Heel facility since the 1990s.
This case study originally appeared in The GEMI Quick Guide on Renewable and Alternative Energy.
Images and Source: Smithfield-Farmland Tar Heel, NC Covered Anaerobic Digester. Smithfield-Farmland Tar Heel, NC Biogas System diagram from SCADA