Thursday, 26 November 2009

Poo Power
November 23

By next year, California utility companies must get at least one-fifth of their energy from renewable sources like solar, wind and wave power. Renewable as in the sun shines, the wind blows and the waves crash every day. Marketplace reports that energy company PG&E has thought of another source that gets renewed daily - - if you're lucky, that is.

We're talking about poop. Not yours, thankfully, but cows'. Methane gas captured from cow manure can be cleaned up and pumped through pipes to be used as power. And it's incredibly efficient. Each cow produces about 120 pounds of manure each day. It takes just two cows-worth of manure to power one home in California.

Not only does harvesting methane reduce the need for other energy sources like coal, which are limited and create greenhouse gases in the process of extraction, but using the methane for energy also takes it out of the atmosphere where it contributes to global warming, according to CNET. We'd say it sounds like a pretty sensible mooooove.