Giant utility American Electric Power said today it will buy 4.6 million carbon credits to capture methane produced by some 400,000 cows between 2010 and 2017. The Ohio-based utility – one of the U.S.’s largest producers of coal-fired electricity – did not disclose the price of the credits. Farmers in the 11 states where AEP operates will receive payments for participating in the program. AEP’s (AEP) deal with the the Environmental Credit Corp. calls for the methane, a potent greenhouse gas, to be captured in covered lagoons and burned off. That still produces carbon dioxide, of course. But if AEP really wants to neutralize the greenhouse gas emissions – and tap some naturally clean power – it could emulate California utility PG&E (PCG) by supporting the conversion of methane into biogas to generate electricity on farms or at natural gas plants.
About Green Wombat
Green Wombat is written by
Todd Woody, a veteran environmental journalist based in California who writes for The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Grist and Yale e360. He's one of the few people on the planet who have held a northern hairy-nosed wombat in the wild.
Todd formerly was a senior editor at Fortune magazine, an assistant managing editor at Business 2.0 magazine and the business editor of the San Jose Mercury News.
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