Proposed manure processing facility

Renew the Blue - Manure processing study announcement

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi recently introduced a 2023 budget proposal that could be a game changer for our lakes. The budget proposal includes an initial $3 million investment for a proposed study for a third Dane County manure digester. If approved, the proposal will lay the groundwork for the design and siting of a regional cow manure processing facility. The proposed budget follows the release of RENEW THE BLUE: A Community Guide for Cleaner Lakes & Beaches in the Yahara Watershed.

The goal is to quadruple the volume of manure treatment in the Yahara River Watershed’s headwaters north of Lake Mendota. This will advance a top-priority, Renew the Blue recommendation. Cow manure can generate renewable energy. It can also be made into marketable fertilizer and compost products to export phosphorus from the Yahara River Watershed.

Middleton Manure Digester
Middleton manure digester

Key takeaways

  • The two digesters currently operating in the watershed process manure from around 10,000 cows. The County’s goal with this new facility is to increase processing capacity to 40,000 cows.
  • Be sure to voice your support by contacting your Dane County Board supervisor.
  • Know that Clean Lakes Alliance will continue to partner with the County to help make this and other lake-improvement actions a reality.
Renew the Blue - Manure processing study announcement
Clean Lakes Alliance Executive Director James Tye offers supporting remarks at a Dane County-hosted media event.

It is thrilling to see such bold action taken on behalf of our lakes. Clean Lakes Alliance applauds Dane County for its ongoing leadership in protecting water quality, and for supporting producers implementing farm practices rooted in sustainability.

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