Dane County Approves Sale of Digester to Clean Fuel Dane

November 06, 2015
Stephanie Miller, Dane County, 608-267-8823 Jessica Niekrasz, Clean Fuel Partners, 773-787-9395
County Executive

Last night, the Dane County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve the transfer of anaerobic digester leases from Clear Horizons to Clean Fuel Dane, LLC.  This is an important step toward finalizing the sale of the digester. The digester removes 3000 pounds of phosphorous a year which is the cause of algae in our lakes.


"The undivided support of the County Board moves us closer to completing the purchase of the digester," said John Haeckel, founder and chief executive officer of Clean Fuel Partners, LLC.  "We appreciate the County Executive's and board's backing and look forward to a strong partnership with the county."


“We look forward to a fresh start for the Waunakee digester,” said County Executive Parisi. “Clean Fuel Dane will be a great partner moving forward to our lakes clean-up and greenhouse gas reduction effort. This sale will help ensure our continuing partnership with Dane County family farms to clean up our lakes. ”


Clean Fuel began discussions with Clear Horizons this summer, with those discussions culminating in an agreement for Clean Fuel to purchase the biodigester in Dane County.  Closing is expected to occur as quickly as reasonably practicable, subject to necessary consents and contractual assignments.


Clean Fuel's plans involve extending the recovery process, bringing the facility to its design capability and looking for additional opportunities to enhance the business while protecting the environment. The company will explore recovering more nutrients from manure through the use of a nutrient concentration system. This proven technology will reduce phosphorous by 100% from cow manure.


Dane County Executive Parisi has been calling for the sale of the Waunakee digester for months.  Dane County owns the land and the water quality equipment but the site is privately operated on a lease from the county. The site consists of digesters and generators to create energy.  Cow manure is processed in three air-tight digester tanks. The tanks are heated to about 100 degrees – just like a cow’s stomach.  Bacteria in manure thrives in these conditions, and they consume solids in the manure while releasing methane gas.  Instead of being released into the atmosphere, the methane is captured at the top of the digester and burned in a generator to create electricity.  Because of the methane released by untreated manure, the digester also reduces greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the CO2 emissions for over 4,000 cars every year.


Clean Fuel Partners exists to make a difference by improving the environment in tangible and measurable ways. They do this by partnering with farmers and communities to transform agricultural waste into renewable energy and other products that support sustainable agricultural practices. Clean Fuel Partners and its partners build and manage proven, advanced biodigester systems that put waste to work for our customers and the stakeholders they serve. www.cleanfuelpartners.com