Renewable Natural Gas: Turning Waste Into Clean Energy
Photo - Smithfield Foods
Dominion Energy is rapidly expanding the use of renewables like solar, wind and hydropower. But did you know that renewable energy can also come from our nation’s farms?
That’s right. Thanks to technological innovation, we can capture waste methane from hog and dairy farms and convert it into clean energy that can heat homes and power businesses.
It’s called renewable natural gas, or RNG, and it’s transforming the future of clean energy. When methane is converted into RNG, it captures 25 times more greenhouse gases from the atmosphere than are released when RNG is used by consumers. That makes RNG better than zero-carbon. It’s actually carbon-beneficial!
Partnering to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
We’re teaming up with the largest U.S. pork and dairy producers to expand renewable natural gas projects across the country and deliver it to U.S. consumers. We’re jointly investing $500 million with Smithfield Foods to produce RNG from U.S. hog farms, and through our partnership with Vanguard Renewables, we’re investing an additional $200 million to develop dairy RNG projects across the U.S. When combined, these partnerships will reduce the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions as taking 650,000 cars off the road or planting 50 million new trees each year.
Where does RNG come from?
When animal waste and other organic material breaks down, it produces methane, or natural gas. Converting it into renewable natural gas is simpler than you might think.
Capturing Methane from Farms
Methane from hog and cow manure is captured from covered digesters outside the barns and transported to a central conditioning facility.
Converting it to RNG
The methane is cleaned at the conditioning facility to 99% pure methane, the same as traditional natural gas.
Delivering to Homes and Businesses
The RNG is then put into existing distribution systems to serve local homes and businesses.