Creating Energy From Cattle Manure

US - The smell of manure hangs over Greeley, Colorado as it has for half a century, but entrepreneurs have recognised its value.
calendar icon 19 October 2009
clock icon 1 minute read

Investors are lining up to support a planned clean energy park that eventually will convert some of the methane gas released from the manure piles into power for a cheese factory and other businesses reports The Huffington Post.

JBS, which runs two of the largest feed yards and the local slaughterhouse, is testing a new technology that heats the cattle excrement and turns it into energy.

"What once used to be a waste stream that was just a byproduct ... they are now recognising has value," said Bruce Biggi, the economic development coordinator for the city of Greeley, which received an $82,000 grant from the governor's energy office this year for the park.

The idea is to lure new business to the area with what Mr Biggi likes to call its renewable natural gas – the endless supply of methane from cheap manure.

By reducing the amount of the potent greenhouse gas released into the air, the projects also potentially could turn cow dung into dollars, if a climate bill before Congress becomes law.

"Agriculture and agribusiness is what Greeley is all about," Mr Biggi said. "We needed to take that strong traditional economic base and ... merge it with emerging renewable energy and technology."

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