“AgSTAR is a tremendous resource to the Nebraska Methane Workgroup. The program serves as a valuable conduit of information to connect states facing similar issues, and this has been particularly helpful.”
Since its inception in 1994, AgSTAR has made meaningful progress reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the agriculture sector. Through outreach, education, training and other tools, AgSTAR continues to support anaerobic digestion of livestock waste.
Anaerobic digestion of livestock waste reduces GHG emissions in two ways:
- Methane emissions are directly reduced as biogas is captured and used as a renewable fuel.
- The energy generated displaces the use of fossil fuels, further avoiding the emission of GHGs and other pollutants.
Recent AgSTAR Accomplishments
- Approximately 317 anaerobic digesters are operating at commercial livestock farms in the United States. To find out more about these projects, explore the Livestock Anaerobic Digester Database.
- In 2020, Anaerobic Digester Projects accounted for in AgSTAR’s Livestock Anaerobic Digester Database reduced 5.27 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MMTCO2e).
- 4.44 MMTCO2e direct methane reductions
- 0.83 MMTCO2e emissions avoided
- Programmatically, AgSTAR sets goals to reduce methane emissions through the increased adoption of anaerobic manure management. In 2020, the AgSTAR program helped reduce GHG emissions by 2.11 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MMTCO2e):
- 1.77 MMTCO2e direct emission reductions
- 0.33 MMTCO2e emissions avoided
Greenhouse Gas Reductions Due to AgSTAR Programs
The chart below shows the amount of direct and indirect greenhouse gas emission reductions attributed to the AgSTAR program’s education and outreach efforts to assist in the development of manure-based anaerobic digestion systems from 2000 through September 2021. The chart shows a steady increase in emissions reductions through 2013 and from 2017 on. Projected emissions reductions in 2021 total 2.38 MMTCO2e.
|Year||Direct Reductions (MMTCO2e)||Indirect Reductions (MMTCO2e)|
In addition to these environmental benefits, AgSTAR has: