There is some research suggesting that separating swine manure into solids and liquids can slightly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions emitted from the manure itself. It is not likely to be significant enough for separation to be a viable strategy by itself.
The primary reason to use solid-liquid manure separation is to prepare manure for further treatment in a system that can:
- generate energy (such as anaerobic digestion, thermal technologies, etc.)
- produce products for re-use on a farm (such as bedding for dairy cows),
- generate compost or fertilizer.
Any of these options can reduce the GHG emissions or carbon footprint of a farm by replacing fossil-fuel intensive inputs.
For more information
- What is manure solid-liquid separation?
- Read about a research project examining solids separation as part of the life cycle assessment for a pig farm.
- Evaluating the environmental footprint of pork production
Authors: Rick Fields, University of Arkansas and Jill Heemstra, University of Nebraska email@example.com
This information is part of the program “Integrated Resource Management Tool to Mitigate the Carbon Footprint of Swine Produced In the U.S.,” and is supported by Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2011-68002-30208 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Project website.