The lagoon covers capture methane produced by the manure and covert it into less harmful carbon dioxide through a flaring process. Methane is 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide in trapping heat in the atmosphere, and the two lagoon covers at this farm will reduce gas emissions this year that are almost equal to the emissions produced by 700 cars in one year.
American Electric Power is paying ECC to put plastic tarps over approximately 200 lagoons holding livestock waste on farms. The emission reduction will translate into carbon credits that AEP might be able to use to offset its obligation to clean up its power plants if Congress imposes a carbon cap in the next few years. It’s not clear whether or not these lagoons in New York are part of the AEP deal.