CPH Ballarat is working with a group of local farmers to find a manufacturing enterprise that uses a lot of heat. The farmers are based in the Pyrenees area of Western Victoria and have about 50,000 tonnes of straw available annually. They are seeking markets for processed straw waste. If the waste straw can be diverted for use as a bio-fuel, then much less straw stubble will be burnt in the paddock thereby reducing emissions. This alliance of farmers is seeking manufacturing enterprises, that have a high need for heat (and possibly power), and who might be interested in purchasing the processed waste straw. CPH and local consultants will help the manufacturers find the right conversion equipment, so the straw can be used instead of gas.
The benefits of this project include keeping jobs in the local area, reduced emissions from burning stubble, a demonstration project for other big users of heat and a demonstration project for other farmers, as the use of straw waste becomes mainstream. Additional benefits include less drift from smoke which can negatively impact on tourist areas nearby as well as reduced risk of fires ‘escaping’ during paddock burns.