Blue Spruce Farm

Description:

In 2005, Blue Spruce Farm began generating power from their anaerobic digester as the first dairy in Vermont to participate in Central Vermont Public Service Corporation’s (CVPS) Cow Power Program. Today, the methane gas from their 1,300 cows is sold to the grid to supply over 300 surrounding homes with electricity.

Blue Spruce Farm

Blue Spruce Farm (credit: Blue Spruce Farm)

In 2013, the Audets became the first VT farm to adopt a wind turbine, which produces 2.5MW of electricity for the farm operation and surrounding community. They also recently added a 2MW solar array on leased land. In an attempt to further reduce their fossil fuel usage, this past fall most of their corn crops were land injected. Thanks to their innovation and creative energy cycling, the Audets receive large numbers of visitors for farm tours each year, and are considered a poster child for environmental farm operations. They attribute their family culture and organized management to their willingness to experiment with new ideas and technologies.

 

Objectives:

  • odor reduction
  • power generation
  • reduce purchased bedding material
  • enhance environmental and social attributes

Outcomes: 

  • improved odor
  • compost better than expected
  • enhanced revenue
  • reputation as environmentally cutting-edge VT farm

IFES Number: 69

City: Bridport

State: VT

Country: USA

Type of Firm: Farm

Main Products: milk, compost

Size of Firm: 3,300 acres; 1,300 cows

Ownership Type: Private

Technology: Biogas;

Energy System Components: Anaerobic digester, Wind Turbine, Solar (PV)

Operational Status: Operational

Year Installed: 2005

Energy Feedstock: Cow manure from 3,000 cows; 2 loads (@4500 gallons/load) whey/week

Energy Uses: Electricity

New co-products: compost

Money Saved: $10,000/yr fossil fuel savings

TCO2 Eq Avoided: 5,108 metric tons CO2E/yr

Website: http://www.bluesprucefarmvt.com/cow-power/

Outputs: milk, cheese

County Population: 36,791

Location: