Manure might be a more valuable commodity than you think! A new report by Washington University researchers shows that farm waste can actually be converted into an alternative energy source. When microorganisms attack the manure, gases such as methane are produced that, in turn, can be used as a source of power. This new research provides benefits that are two-fold: it is a new way to quickly decompose part of the 1.8 billion tons of cattle manure produced (for lack of a better term) each year, and is also a source for bioenergy that can be used directly on the farm where it was produced.
While it isn’t the type of biofuel that we will be pumping into our vehicles (at least I hope not), it may be a valuable new resource to help farmers deal with rising energy costs.
Photo courtesy of Don Perry