Pet manure can generate electricity for millions of people

According to a new study, animal manure conversion into renewable sources can provide enough electricity for about 3% of North America's demand, while significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions ( GHGs).

Research is important for all countries with livestock, as this is the first attempt to outline the process of determining the amount of renewable energy that livestock and other livestock can create. This is accompanied by a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Picture 1 of Pet manure can generate electricity for millions of people

Transforming animal manure into recycled fuel can provide enough electricity for about 3% of North American demand, while significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions(Photo: iStockphoto / Jerome Skiba)

Pet fertilizer, left to decompose naturally, emits two particularly potent greenhouse gases - nitrous oxide and methane . According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, nitrous oxide makes the air hotter by 310 times carbon dioxide, 21 times the methane ratio. The paper presents two hypothetical situations and quantifies and compares the benefits of saving energy and reducing GHG. The first situation is 'commercial as usual' with burning coal for energy and fertilizer left behind for natural decomposition. The second situation is that the fertilizer is decomposed by microorganisms to produce biogas to replace coal.

Microbial decomposition , like the process of making compost, fertilizer can be converted into energy-rich bio-gas , which in turn can produce electricity using small standard turbines. Hundreds of millions of pets in the United States can generate about 100 million kilowatt hours of electricity, enough to supply millions of homes and offices. On the other hand, natural biodegradable fertilizers cause adverse environmental impacts, the new waste management system is capable of reducing 99 million tons of GHG, cutting about 4% of GHG emissions from production. electricity across the country.

The burning of biofuels could lead to carbon emissions, but production from biogas plants is much less than coal.

The authors of the paper, Dr. Michael E. Webber and Amanda D Cuellar from the University of Texas at Austin, wrote: 'Talking about criticism aimed at biofuels, the production of biogas from fertilizers has Reuse benefits of the least controversial source of waste, and potential for environmental improvement '.

'However, the supply of large-scale biogas production, including transport of materials and decomposers, must be specified at the local level, in order to create an economical and friendly energy system. with the environment '.

Dr.Michael E. Webber and Amanda D Cuellar.Cow Power: The Energy and Emissions Benefits of Converting Manure to Biogas.Environmental Research Letters, 3 034002 (8pp), July 24, 2008 DOI: 10.1088 / 1748-9326 / 3/3/034002