Cornell PRO-DAIRY Program – Dairy Environmental Systems Group

Program or topic

Cornell Dairy Environmental Systems

Department(s) or unit(s)

  • Animal Science
  • Biological and Environmental Engineering

Contact information

Curt Gooch
Senior Extension Associate, Biological and Environmental Engineering
(607) 255-2088

Jennifer Pronto
Research Support Specialist II, Biological and Environmental Engineering
(607) 227-7943

Program goals

The Dairy Environmental Systems Program is a multi-disciplinary effort among members of the Cornell PRO-DAIRY and SPEAR programs, and collaborative faculty and staff in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences to address critical aspects of dairy farming and its impact on the environment. 

Brief Description

A major goal of the Dairy Environmental Systems Program is to develop and deliver sound information and tools to dairy farmers and their advisors engineered and packaged in ways that allow farmers to make sound business decisions in production areas that influence profitability, neighbor relations, water quality, air quality and the climate. Renewable energy (dairy manure-based anaerobic digestion) is a major focus area of the program.

Key areas of work:

  • Integrated manure management systems: feasibility, design, evaluation, and economics
  • Renewable energy: anaerobic digestion
  • Greenhouse gases
  • Livestock and climate change
  • Greenhouses and Controlled Environment Agriculture – synergistic opportunities with anaerobic digestion
  • Dairy facilities: farmstead layout and barn design
  • Cow comfort: stall, floor, feed, ventilation and cooling design and evaluation, and economics
  • Farmstead environmental management

Highlighted Projects

  • Animal Agriculture and Climate Change
  • Optimizing synergistic anaerobic digester opportunities
  • Anaerobic digester monitoring and performance assessment
  • Workforce Development – Curriculum Development for anaerobic digester owners/operators
  • EPA air quality monitoring
  • Community anaerobic digester facility feasibility study

Most Popular Resources/Publications (available on project website)

  • Interactive map for all NYS anaerobic digester locations
  • Case studies for dairy farms with anaerobic digesters in NYS
  • Fact sheets for many key areas of work
  • Many anaerobic digester safety protocols

For More Information


Category: Agriculture/Farming, Bio-energy/-fuel/-gas, Dairy and other livestock, Energy, Greenhouse gasses, aerosols, Soil/fertilizer/manure

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