The power supplier for most of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives has something new to cluck about: a state-of-the-art facility on co-op lines that converts poultry waste into electricity.
North Carolina Electric Membership Corp. expects the recently opened Carolina Poultry Power facility to be a major resource to help it meet the state’s Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard. In addition to power, NCEMC will purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) from the CPP to fulfill the standard’s requirements for in-state renewable energy producers.
The Raleigh-based generation and transmission cooperative must procure and retire enough RECs from renewable energy resources to meet 10% of its prior year retail sales, and a portion of the RECs must come from poultry waste facilities.
“The CPP is going to help us reach our compliance requirement,” said Debbie Britt, NCEMC manager of portfolio management. “It also will benefit the area’s poultry farmers, many of whom are our members, who now are able to supply waste and turn it into an asset.”
The $32 million facility is served by Pitt & Greene Electric Membership Corp. in Farmville, where its developer, Power Resource Group, is also based. Pitt & Greene upgraded its substation and distribution system infrastructure to ensure a successful interconnection between CPP and the co-op’s system.
“It’s exciting to see a unique facility like this take shape within a cooperative community,” said Mark Suggs, executive vice president and general manager of Pitt & Greene EMC. “Agriculture is incredibly important to this region, and we’re proud to support this key industry while also encouraging local job creation, economic development and sustainability.”
At full capacity, the facility will process 200 tons of poultry waste a day from local farms that will convert to about 165,000 megawatt-hours of electricity and steam energy per year.
“It was truly a pleasure to work with Pitt & Greene EMC on this innovative project,” said Richard Deming, Power Resource Group CEO and CPP managing partner. “The close working relationship and focus from the team was critical in getting interconnection done in a timely manner, and NCEMC was a fantastic partner in navigating complex issues. Partnering with the electric cooperatives has been an excellent experience.”
“This is a win-win for North Carolina’s energy and agriculture sectors as we work together to achieve a brighter energy future for our state,” said Mike Burnette, NCEMC’s senior vice president of power supply and chief operating officer.
Cathy Cash is a staff writer at NRECA.