SWEA visited Bwlchwernen Fawr farm to give some advice on the feasibility of utilising one, or both, of the slurry stores to extract biogas for use in a boiler to provide heat for the creamery and milking parlour.
Bwlchwernen Fawr is a 130-acre (52 hectares) farm situated about 10 miles (16 km) from the Ceredigion coast, West Wales. Originally as a member of a commune, then tenant and now owner, Patrick Holden has been based at the farm since the early 70’s. In the early 80s, Patrick became increasingly involved with the organic movement, specifically the Soil Association – where he was Director until 2010. The Soil Association is the UK’s leading environmental charity promoting sustainable, organic farming and championing human health. It was here he met his wife, Becky, who now runs the farm.
Bwlchwernen Fawr has been certified organic management since 1973, which makes it the longest standing registered organic dairy farm in Wales.
Originally introduced to Becky by Food Centre Wales, SWEA visited Bwlchwernen Fawr to give some advice on the feasibility of utilising one, or both, of the slurry stores to extract biogas for use in a boiler to provide heat for the creamery and milking parlour.
Aims and Objectives of this Action
Without knowing the content of the gas (particularly the methane) it would be unwise to try to burn the gas in a boiler. The potential for hugely variable calorific value was seen to be highly problematic – and potentially dangerous. The objective of the monitoring is therefore to get data on which to base a strategy for gas utilisation.
A secondary but potentially incredibly important objective is to achieve a set of data that gives policy makers a much better idea what, in terms of GHG emissions, is being released into the atmosphere from countless slurry stores around Wales, UK, EU and the world. The data will be most valuable for temperate zones.
Find out more on BiogasAction here