Cargill reduces greenhouse gas emissions, natural gas usage

June 16, 2009

Cargill announced it has successfully registered and sold more than 400,000 tonnes of Verified Emission Offsets through the Canadian Standards Association. The emission offsets originate from a methane gas capture project at the wastewater treatment system of its beef processing facility in High River, Alberta.

The project enables the facility to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) emitted from wastewater lagoons by utilizing the biogas in plant boilers. The project includes the capture of biogas containing approximately 75 percent methane from the facility's wastewater lagoons and the beneficial use of the biogas to reduce natural gas usage at the plant. Approximately 25 percent of the facility's natural gas usage has been displaced by the project through the capture of biogas.

The project will continue to generate emission offsets according to the provisions of the Alberta Environment Quantification Protocol for Methane Capture from the Anaerobic Treatment of Industrial Wastewater (AENV, 2009). The opportunity for generating carbon offsets arises mainly from direct and indirect reductions of greenhouse gas emissions achieved through the capture and combustion of biogas, produced during wastewater treatment processes used in the food processing industry. The offsets were verified by an independent, qualified verifier and serialized and registered in accordance with the guidance documents of the Alberta Specified Gas Emitters Regulation.

Blue Source Canada, an emission offset service and marketing company, worked with Cargill to develop a means to quantify the environmental impact and market the resulting emission offsets.

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