The California Department of Food & Agriculture (CDFA) has awarded $35.2 million in grant funding to 18 dairy digester projects across the state.
These projects, part of the Dairy Digester Research & Development Program (DDRDP), will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from manure on California dairy farms, CDFA said.
Dairy manure produces methane when it decomposes. Dairy digesters help capture methane emissions, which can be used to produce electricity or natural gas.
“California continues to the lead the nation in supporting smart climate programs that address on-farm challenges and promote agricultural sustainability,” CDFA secretary Karen Ross said. “I applaud our dairy farmers for proactively addressing climate pollutants and reducing overall greenhouse emissions to help meet the state’s climate goals.”
CDFA also administers the Alternative Manure Management Program, which promotes non-digester manure management practices in California dairy and livestock operations to reduce methane emissions. By the Oct. 16 deadline, CDFA had received 53 applications requesting a total of $29.5 million in grants. These applications are currently under review.
Financial assistance for the installation of dairy digesters comes from California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that uses cap-and-trade program funds to support the state’s climate goals. CDFA and other state agencies are investing these proceeds in projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide additional benefits to California communities.
Dairy digester grant recipients will provide an estimated $71.2 million in matching funds for the development of their projects.
Information about the 2017 DDRDP projects is available at www.cdfa.ca.gov/go/dd.