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Anaerobic Digestion Facilities: Operators’ Perspectives on Siting and More

March 27 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

NERC/NEWMOA Four Part Webinar Series

Webinar 3: Anaerobic Digestion Facilities: Operators’ Perspectives on Siting and More

Hear from operators of three successful, diverse anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities from Maine, Connecticut, and Maryland, followed by a generous question and answer period. The presenters will cover topics including:

  • Choosing the specific AD technology for their application;
  • Finding the site for the facility;
  • Targeting and handling feedstocks;
  • Using the biogas and digestate; and
  • Engaging the community and addressing environmental justice concerns during development and operations.

View the presentation slides [PDF]




Holden Cookson, Director of Business Development, Agri-Cycle

Holden has been a dynamic force in the food waste management sector since his collegiate days at the University of Maine at Farmington in 2013. It was there that he discovered his passion for sustainability, working alongside experts like Mark King of the DEP to revitalize (the now flourishing) Farmington Compost Cooperative’s composting site.

During the intervening years, Holden has been instrumental in guiding numerous businesses, communities, and corporations to either kickstart or significantly enhance their food waste recycling services. His efforts have not only contributed to the growth of sustainable practices but also fostered a culture of environmental responsibility across various sectors. Holden’s vast knowledge extends beyond composting and AD; he is equally versed in food waste reduction and donation practices, showcasing his comprehensive understanding of what it means to be Food Full Circle. This expertise has been crucial in developing innovative solutions that not only divert waste from landfills but also support food security efforts by donating surplus food to those in need.

Today, Holden is the Director of Business Development for Agri-Cycle Energy as well as the Founder of Against The Grain New England.

Brian Paganini, Vice President and Managing Director, Quantum Biopower

Brian led the design, permitting, and construction of the only operating large scale food waste to energy facility on the East Coast.  The facility is located in Southington, CT and recycles 40,000 tons/year of food waste creating 1.2MW of power and 10,000 tons/year of organic compost.  Quantum’s facility removes 5,000 tons of CO2 emissions through their methane recycling process. Brian leads all facets of the company’s operations and business including the development of new facilities located around the Northeast.  Brian is a board member of the RecycleCT Foundation chaired by the DEEP Commissioner of Connecticut.  Apart from business operations, Brian focuses extensively on fostering academic partnerships with the University of Connecticut, as well as, promoting new recycling and energy legislation in an effort to create innovation and technology initiatives around recycling, in Connecticut. Prior to managing Quantum’s business, he worked in the biomedical field.

Andrew Cassilly, Vice President of Governmental Relations, Bioenergy Devco

Andrew currently serves as Vice President of Governmental Relations for Bioenergy Devco, a leader in anerobic digester development and operation in Europe and the United States. In prior rolls Andrew served as the Chief Legislative Officer and Senior Advisor to Governor Hogan where he oversaw the governor’s environmental and renewable energy legislative initiatives.  Andrew was elected to two terms in the Maryland General Assembly  as a State Delegate where he served five years on the House Environment and Transportation Committee. Andrewsuccessfully passed several State laws promoting organics recycling and renewable energy. He also served as the Resource Conservation Supervisor in the public school system where he implemented renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Andrew received his BS in Industrial Technology from Millersville University and his master’s in administrative management from Loyola College.


March 27
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
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