Saturday, July 19, 2008

Grass to Gas

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Cutting Out the Middle Man


I wonder what has become of the idea of turning one of the Ireland's most plentiful products into bio-fuel.

Instead of turning Ireland's most plentiful grass - it's everywhere - into a relatively small bit of meat and a sup or two of milk - with the unfortunate resulting by-products of tons of cow fart gas and mega-tons upon tons of cow shit, the idea was to process the grass-to-gas directly instead of using the cow as a middle man - so to speak.

35% of Ireland's Greenhouse Gas comes from Cow Farts

According to a BBC report, "Environmental scientist Professor Frank Convery claims cows breaking wind and belching account for 35% of Ireland's green-house gas emissions"

Now if that gas could be bottled and used - wouldn't it be great!! But I can't visualise herds of cattle with tubes up the ass collecting the fart gas - can you?

There was some talk of The Environmental Research Institute at University College Cork along with Teagasc Research facility at Johnstown Castle working on cutting out the middle man (cow) and turning the grass directly into usable gas.

There are other ideas of using special enzymes to break down grass and make ethanol. I will be trying to find out what is the state of play in these efforts. If anyone out there has the word I would love to hear from you.



Middle Man = Cow
Fart Gas = Methane



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4 comments:

Juraj said...

I'd like to know how those scientists worked out the ratio of green houses gases. Maybe they can do the same with people's farts :)

Garrett said...

Gerry Murphy in UCC is the main person promoting grass to biogas in Ireland. He lectured me last year and the figures are very convicing. There is a brief outline of these figures published in SEI's recent Bioenergy News 2008 which I'm sure can be downloaded from their website.

jenny said...

Hi there, I have a question. I live in the USA -- and we are desperately looking for a pellet steam boiler. Do you have any suggestions who might sell to the US?

thanks in advance!

jenny said...

hi there,

we live in the USA and are desperately looking for a pellet steam boiler. any ideas on who might sell to the USA?

thanks in advance!