Methane digesters could become more profitable for many U.S. livestock operations if prices rise in voluntary, regional or national carbon markets, according to the USDA Economic Research Service (ERS).

ERS recently released two new reports about anaerobic digesters. The first, “Climate Change Policy and the Adoption of Methane Digesters,” examines farm size, location, manure management, electricity prices and carbon prices, and discusses how they could impact the number of digesters on livestock farms. Read the new publication online at

A second ERS publication examines the potential for climate change legislation and how the prices of carbon could affect the adoption and use of methane digesters on dairy and hog farms. View the PDF of the publication at