REDONDO BEACH, CA / CRWEPRESSRELEASE / September 22, 2015 /Bion Environmental Technologies Inc. (OTCMKTS:BNET) recently announced a new patent application for a process that recovers a nitrogen-rich, natural, non-synthetic fertilizer product from a livestock waste stream. Similar to traditional recycling technologies, the company hopes that its technology will enable livestock waste to be recycled into solid nitrogen fertilizers that can be transported and sold to farming operations, as well as other byproducts including a variety of forms of renewable energy, soil amendments, and potentially feed additives.
“This product marks the first to be identified for broad commercialization as a result of our Separate and Aggregate Strategy that treats the livestock waste stream as a source of assets to be recovered and refined,” said Bion Environmental Communication Director Craig Scott.
The technology could prove to be a breakthrough for the industry, since it addresses a growing environmental problem with an economically-attractive solution.
Growing Environmental Problem
According to the EPA, livestock agricultural practices are one of the largest sources of nutrient pollution to the nation’s water sources where it feeds algal blooms. Livestock produces approximately a billion tons of manure each year, which translates to over eight million pounds per day of nitrogen and three million pounds per day of phosphorus. Under the guise of fertilizing crops, the waste is routinely applied to the ground in excess amounts.
The livestock industry has historically enjoyed a number of exemptions and less regulation under the Clean Air and Water Act than other industries, but those dynamics are quickly changing with a U.S. federal court ruling that manure can be regulated as solid waste. Several states are also taking action on the matter, such as the State of Pennsylvania with Senate Bill 724, which would shift spending from traditional high-cost downstream solutions to cost-effective solutions from the private sector. Such examples of these solutions include onsite livestock waste treatment to deal with their federally-mandated requirements to reduce pollution to the Chesapeake Bay.
The Pennsylvania legislation could serve as a blueprint for similar programs across the nation, where many states struggle with excess nutrients, both locally and downstream. EPA is increasingly focused on excess nutrients that it calls the greatest water quality problem in the U.S. today. Clearly, regulations similar to those implemented in the Chesapeake Bay are coming soon for other affected watersheds.
Many in the livestock industry, including most of the dairy industry, have recently announced support of a market-driven strategy like PA SB 724, which would encourage the industry to make a much greater contribution to watershed cleanup efforts by allowing them to compete for public funding based on the cost of reductions – not politics. The livestock industry can supply large-scale solutions that would speed implementation, while saving the public, who ultimately foots the bill, 80 percent of the projected compliance costs – $1.5 BILLION annually in Pennsylvania alone.
Attractive Economic Solution
There are many different companies that are focused on cleaning up the environment in an economically-attractive way, ranging from Appliance Recycling Center of America’s (NASDAQ: ARCI) focus on recycling old appliances to Darling International Inc.’s (NYSE: DAR) recycling of food waste. In these instances and many others, profitable companies have been built by taking traditionally discarded raw materials and repurposing them into valuable products.
Since 1990, Bion Environmental has been uniquely focused on repurposing livestock waste – an area with very little competition. Its patented, next-generation technology provides comprehensive treatment of livestock waste that achieves substantial reductions in nutrients, ammonia, greenhouse gases, and other harmful products in the waste stream, while generating renewable energy and value-added nutrients as a byproduct of the process. Bion anticipates it will be paid for the environmental cleanup by selling nutrient and other credits – like a “tipping fee” – and will be producing revenues from sales of high-value byproducts from the “waste.”
The only things holding the company back over the past several years were (1) a lack of regulatory catalysts to drive adoption of its technology and/or (2) a salable byproduct that could be generated from livestock waste at scale and in an economically-attractive way. With its new patent and an improving regulatory environment, the company is uniquely positioned to deliver significant value over the coming quarters and years to shareholders.
Common sense says it is inevitable that the livestock industry – one of the largest sources of unregulated pollution in the US and the world – will have to be cleaned up. It seems more a question of when, not if.
Bion Environmental trades with a market capitalization of just over $20 million, despite its significant long-term potential and growing number of near-term catalysts. While the company hasn’t generated meaningful revenue yet, management has been working on the ground floor of new cleanwater policy development, both in Pennsylvania and nationally, building its intellectual property, and developing a business model based on multiple revenue streams in a number of very large national markets.
“We will continue to identify and develop opportunities to capture value from the waste stream in the form of commercial products, including various forms of renewable energy, fertilizer products, soil amendments, and potentially feed additives,” added Mr. Scott.
As of one of the only competitors within the livestock waste management industry, which could become a multi-billion dollar opportunity over the coming years, investors may want to take a close look at the stock pre-revenue as an opportunity to begin building a position.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.biontech.com.
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SOURCE: Emerging Growth LLC