tv Earth Focus LINKTV December 11, 2019 9:00pm-9:31pm PST
narrator: on this episode of "earth focus," climate change is forcing traditional dairy producers to look for more sustainable methods. in central california, farmers have found wayays to reduce and evenen reue methane gas, while in eastern africa, drought is creating a market for an unexpected source of milk.
different announcer: "earth focus" is made possible in part by a grant from anne ray foundation, a margaret a. cargill philanthropy; the orange county c community foundation; and the farvue foundndation. man: so this is a tradition here. we put cups in the freezer, best way to drink milk. [cows mooing] one thing i've learned about cows here, of which about 2,500 are milking and then you have a dry period, in a perfect world, 660 days. [cows mooing] she has a calf, and then she produces milk again for another year. [whistles] lot of our milk gets made into butter. and then some of our milk also goes to making mozzarelella cheese. there's a
good chancnce you're tastingng e oof our milklk every day. [engine starts] he likes--he likes driving papa around. i'm just--i'm teaching him for later when i'll actually need a driver. you're gonna go out the same way. go slow. you know, a few years ago, california adopted a regulation that really foforced our industy toto start looking a at ways to mitigate the e methane that coms off or out of the cow. you u ner want to get more regegulations thrown on top of you. they're extreremely hard to deal wiwithd sometimes you can't deal with them. everybody's kind ofof grapplpling. cows s make manurue every day and very consistently do. cow eats, you know, dry matter-wise, we'e're around 50 o
660 pounds a day. so, , you kno, all that goes in one end, makes a little bitit of milk, and d at of f it comes o out. i probobaby maybe undererestimated w what te potential is for methane going into the environment. you know, we could easily ignore stuff like this, but we're a generational family. we live on our farms. we want to take care of the water, we want too take care of the air 'cause we''re trying to dodo something that is gonna be positive for my facility, for our industry, and for the environment. having said that, we have to stay economically viable or i'm not in business. repororter: governor j jerry brn today signed a bill regulating emissions from dairyry cows s ad lalandfills to fight clilimate change beyond carbon-based
greenhouse gaseses. now, the bil mandates a 40% reduction in methane and hydrofluoric carbon by 2030. lara: we will reduce methane emissions 40%, reducining organc waste in landfills and working with our dairy industry to reduce e emissions from cows and manure. man: when manure sits in a deep pond, a naturally-occurring bacteria that work in a cow's stomach, or actually in a c co's 4 stomachs, those same bacteria keep eating the left over little bits of sugar and other calories, and they emit biogas, which is a combination of methane and co2. both of those are greenhouse gases. and one ccow tends to hahave about 4 to5 ttons per year of c co2 equival. if you want to look at it ththat way, essentially y it's aboboute same greeeenhouse gas f footpris a vehicle, asas a car.. we are a dairy digester development and operations company. a dairy digester is a piece ofof equipmentnt that processes daiairy manure and extracts methane g gas, which hs essentially a
naturally-y-occurringg biogas that vents ouout of manure. . a digester's s just a device for capturing that gas so it doesn't vent into the air, but instead can be used usefully. and so if you capture it, you get a twofer. you get to preventnt the gases from escapig into thehe environmement and you have a usable e fuel. so all w'e done here i is we've taken n a normal-sized manure pond which hhas a wholele bunch of f liquid mananure, we've coverered it uph a flexible membrane so that there's no oxygen. and those little bacteria in there, they think they're still in a cow's stomach. that's why we call it a digester. they eat the remaining calories, they emit methane gas, which rises to the top, that we capture, preventing g the greenhouse gases from escaping into the air, and being able to use that gas as a fuel for other uses now. shyler: we get biogas from neaarby dairies. most t recentle laid in a a pipeline thahat will collect biogagas from 11 or more lolocal dairieies, digesteters t local dairieses. and d then we e it as it this proroduction facility fofor fuel, or in some
caseses, we turnrn that renenewe nanatural gas into a fuel didirectly. mamanure is imimporo the dadairies. they use e the nutrient value. these are dairyry farms. ththey really y . there's a symbiotic relelationship. they growow a lf theirir own food. the nutririens they get from manure are important for that. so this is a little bit lilike making lemonae ouout of lemonons. in my v vie's bbetter than thahat. it's kind f like mamaking lemonade out ofofi don't know, l lemon wastete. its prettyty cool. maas: jojoey arioso's a dadairy producer, one of the first families, actually, to put in a dairy facility in this particular area of the county.y. and so we need the producers to make this work. we wanant as may healthy, , stable proroducers around, and jojoey was the first one in this particular area. so we're building out to him and we're building to the neighbors as fast as we can. arioso: we use clean water to flush the calves. and then this
water r will go out to our p po. we'llll use it to flush thehe ls and the milk cows. and then after we separate, it'll eventually come back into the digester. and then after that, we'll use it to irrigate with. so it's--everything around hehere--all the water onon the m is recycled d 3 to 4 times. maas: when we approach a dairy, we explain to them their options. we come together with design, we oversee construction, and then we operate the facility. lyle and calgren renewablele fuels arere partnerg this s project. t they'veve gote leadad of the acactual gas c clp operarations. s so essentntialle deliver them the raw gas by working with the dairies, and they process the gas and get it into the pipeline on their plant. shyler: one of the options for using that biogas is to turn it into c cng--compreressed natural gas. maas: so our final end product is natural gas. it's biologically no different than natural gas that flows in the pipes to your house. it can be used for a variety of things, but we're going to use it for,
and what we are using it for, is vehicle fuel. arioso: itit's really simple on the farm. we have a covered lagoon. we capture the gas from the cow. t they dry it just a bt herere, and then they push it to calgren, and then they do all the extra stuff, cleaning and everything that they need to do toto make it where they y can rl or reueuse the gagas on theirirn facility. so i it just madade at of sense. maas: the state of california has set a target that they want to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the state, and it's particularly from the dairy industry. they want a 40% reduction by about the middle of the next decade. and it's a carrot and stick approach. they said to the dairy industry, "if you will voluntarily inststall these facilities and meet that goal, t then that's great. ififu dodon't, we'll probabably regule you." and so the e dairy indust, working with our industry and others, have all found a way to make these projects profitable so the farmers can afford to put these in, can generate some revenue by doing it, and hopefully forestall some regulation as welell. arioso: sshort term, of coururse
you'u've got to pay fofor the initial investment. but frfrom r standpoioint, we didn't t have o put a lotot of capitatal out. te main thing i was worried about was making sure that if i do this, the state will recognize that i've mitigated my methane prproblem on m my farm. maas: : a facility like e this n the d dairy farm runs in ththe neighborhood of a fefew million dollars, depending on the size of the dairiry. the statate of californrnia had somome funds available e that have e been vey beneneficial in n getting momore farmers to invest and reducing that capital cost. arioso: if there isis a positive note to this regulatition, thty aare willing to help our indnduy mitigate it, you know, witsosome dollars and then, you know, some science that, you know, on technology as we've just put in to help mitigate the problem. it's not just t the milk now. yu know, i keep saying g the milkk becacause that's--every month wn i sit down to pay my bills, you know, up titill 3 mononths ago,t was only my milklk check. now, u know, it''s the gas. the cow's actctually gonna create a anothr
form of income, you know, really driven by amazing technology. maaaas: the amomount of revevena digester c can create e for a fr depends on the fininancial arrangemenents. but in general,t cacan produce e a 6-figurere ino the fararm. so he''s geneneratiw rerevenue without t takingng additioional risk. . and it makt a lot t easier whehen you go b o ththe state anand ask to e expar dairiry or ask t to change y yor operations because you've shown that you're already p progressie and youou're already ahead of te curvrve in implementing envnvironmental protections. arioso: you have to m make sure you comply with the newer regulatations, otheherwise yourm becomes w worthless. . and so, y inintent was t to preserveve the ofof my farm. . and even t thouh we'e're 3 m months intoto it, is pretty promising so far. maas: i thihink the main reasona dairy farmer wouldn't do this is if they aren't certain about the future of the dairy itself, which is really the question facing a lot of families is, can they continue to be competitive in california, in the modern economy. and d that's hard to d. it takes scale, it takes efficiency. it takes a lot of thinings, investstment in new
technolology. many f farms would like to keep milking cowows as long as they y could, butut not every family can. arioso: a cow i is really an unbnbelievable creature. . i me, theyey consume tremendous s amos of byprododucts that t would be waste prproducts, yoyou know. ththey'rere able to o convert tt iinto milk a and beef and now s. maasas: this is s easily thehe largesest dairy bibiogas projejn tthe united states. 3-4 million gallons of fufuel a year r is wt we think we''ll prproduce, andd we'e'll go o up from ththere. ss digester, in terms of greenhouse gagas impacts, wouould have thee impact as removing over 3,000 cars from thehe road. thiis w wt we hope is t the newest growth f the industry to try to produce more and more gas from america's dadairies. arioso: this gives us a way to tell our story and, you know, add to the story. yyou know, we've had kind of the samame sty for a lonong time, and we can
protect t e envirmentnt, but also, you know, k kind of conone down this path of energy independence, the next technology that can make, you know, our farms more efffficient andd more environmentally protective. shyler: i think that dairies in cacalifornia h have gone t thros and downs. mostly recenently i's been n tough timemes for them. marginsns haven't been n there.s is an opopportunity y for them o kind of expand a littttle bititn a wayay, they arare entering th energygy business,s, whichs s kd of coolol. ararioso: i''m pretty blessesedi mean, we have 4 generations on the farm. my dad i is still her. he just tururned 80. you know, d my grandson won't t really appreciate this until later.. having said that, i want the next generationon to know t the pototential is s unlimited d ont youou can do wiwith what yoyou'e doing. youou know, ddon't t evet short sighted and think that,
you know,w, all's he can n do it milk outut of a cocow. this i ia be anotheher way of f making her more efficient, anand it's prety amazing. narrator: californian's concerned about climate change are searching for ways to reduce methane that stem from the state's more than 5.2 millllion cows. by cocontrast, east africn farmers facing historic drought are turning to a traditional alternative to quench their thirst.
warsame: i live in the u.s., in the state of georgia for the last 20 years. and i i was a rel eestate attotorney, so i canan l ice to an eskimo. camel milk is the next generation dairy. that's what i believeve. momost of the people are goioing healthy at the moment. and they believe that, you know, camel milk is medicinal. as a result of that, a lot of rich people or middle upper class are drinking it. . and mostly they're being prescribed by their doctors. we are working with universities and also research centers. they ccome here every 3 3 months. thy come and check samples of milk. and now we are working with the
allergy doctors in lactose intolerance. those one, they are responding g very positivevely. we haven't exported yet, but i will be very glad if i see my product on any supermarket on the shelf. that way i will know that i made it. [horn honks] man: from an early age, i was very interested in the deserts. during the teenage yeyears, i ud to spend a lot of time in northehern kenya. and then i end up doing 7 years' research on camel milk production. there's quite a long history with camels in the family. yeah, long may it last.
the body of research is now beginning to show the benefits of drinking camel's milk. we've also done some work here in kenya looking at diabetics. although we couldn't prove it statistically, it was definitely an improvement in blood sugar r control. and tha's another thing with camel's milk, it has a very high vitamin "c" content. so for societies who don't normally eat fruit or vegetables, that's where they've been getting their vitamin "c" sources and have been perfectly healthy y all this ti. on the other side, some of the benefits you might have heard is that it t has a slimming effece, that i it has good effecect on cholesterol and obesity. and so you may find that it could actualy y also benefefit nutritn issues in the western world. because of this long history of the benefits of drinking camel's milk, we're seeing more and more urban people taking an interest in buying camel's milk.
man: we're in nairobi cbd, actually, the central business district, at a somali restaurant. you ask fofor tea, they'll just bring you a camel tea without even asking. man: we have so many rather different types of products being taken out of this milk, camel milk. for example, we've got yogurt, we've got the carmel latte, which is loved specifically by the somalis. ahmed: it helps with my digestion. and, you know, i feel energized. and you can actually feel it instantly. when you drink, that day you'll actually feel it, like it's a detox. simpkin: with the human population growth globally, the world has been n me intensification in tererms of producing food for humans. we all know the e impact of livestk in terms of being blamed for global warming.g. in some countries, there's g gonna be ls rainfall or higher variability in the rainfall. and the camel
is going to be one of the best adapted animals to deal with that. so really they are an animal of the e future. announcer: "earth focus" is made possible in part by a grant from anne ray foundation, a margaret a. cargill philanthropy; the orange county community foundation; and the farvue foundation.
cordero-lamb: i think there really is something to using the medidicines that your ancestors s have been n using fa really long time. i think our bodies remember a lot, not just trauma. i think our bodies remember medicine. i think our bodies remember knowledge. i think they remember places. >> one of the most dangerous aspects of the new drug addiction is that the drugs abused are legally sanctioned, mass-produced, and available everywhere. cordero-lamb: that whole idea--"if it's more expensive, it's better"-- that is really something that we've brougught into o our whole mindset ass western coconsumers. you spend more momoney on it,t, surely itt will l work better, and if f you takke twice as much h of it, i'l wo even betttter, so we've gotot this "bigger, better, faster" mindset going. then you look at