| LITTLETON, N.H.
LITTLETON, N.H. Oct 18 Cow manure will be used
to power skiers to the top of a Vermont resort this winter as
part of a growing effort to generate electricity from a
byproduct of the state's iconic dairy farms.
Killington, one of the largest ski resorts in New England,
will use 300,000 kilowatt hours of electricity made from manure
generated on 13 farms this year to run its K-1 Express Gondola
to the top of the resort's namesake 4,241-foot peak, a
spokeswoman for the resort said on Thursday.
The manure-generated electricity is distributed through a
renewable energy program at Green Mountain Power, the state's
largest utility. Begun in 2004 by Central Vermont Public
Service, which was acquired by Green Mountain Power's parent
company this year, the "cow power" program now generates five
megawatts using manure from 10,000 of the state's 270,000
Under the process, manure collected from barn floors during
the day is mixed with wash water from milking equipment.
Bacteria in an anaerobic digester then process the manure slurry
into methane gas, which is burned to generate electricity. The
program currently consumes 300,000 gallons of manure per day.
"We're always looking at ways to be environmentally
efficient and we're always looking forward to ways to help
farmers," said Sarah Thorson, a spokeswoman for the ski resort.
Vermont power customers including Long Trail Brewing
Company, Middlebury College and Woodchuck Hard Cider pay a
premium of $.04 per kilowatt hour to offset additional costs of
the renewable energy scheme.
Killington is the first ski resort in Vermont to use manure