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Five Megawatt Biomass Plant To Be Built Near Las Cruces

Southwest BioEnergy (SWBE, LLC) will build a plant in Vado, New Mexico to generate electricity from cow manure. The facility will initially eliminate approximately 275 tons of cow manure collected per day from 15 local dairies. The plant will use heat to power steam turbine generators. Converting biomass to energy also reduces the need for landfill. SWBE has signed a 20 year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the El Paso Electric Company. Power generation will gradually increase to 18 megawatts.

This project was made possible by New Mexico’s Renewable Energy Standard, a law that was strengthened in the 2007 Legislative Session. Public utilities are now required to include renewable energy at the rate of 15% by 2015 and 20% by 2020. Public utilities are required to submit a Renewable Energy Procurement Plan annually to the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission(PRC) for approval. The Vado Biomass Plant was included in EPE’s Procurement Plan and the Texas utility will receive credit for the energy purchased at the biomass plant toward meeting the NM Renewable Energy Standard.

Find out more about how cow poop can power your toaster at the South West Energy Alliance Fair.