'Green Dreams': Cow manure turned into electricity | The Columbus D...

May 17, 2010 Read more: Columbus Dispatch 38
Leon D. Weaver walks past his stock at Bridgewater Dairy in Montpelier. He turns their manure into fertilizer, electricity and more. Read more
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PC on the TEE

Claypool, IN

#1 May 17, 2010
This is goofy. Does anyone seriously believe that processing manure and harvesting dandelions will solve our energy problems??? If you, do then YOU are full of manure! We must drill and then drill some more until we locate every last drop of oil in our land, period.
onlyincolumbus

Columbus, OH

#2 May 17, 2010
PC on the TEE wrote:
This is goofy. Does anyone seriously believe that processing manure and harvesting dandelions will solve our energy problems??? If you, do then YOU are full of manure! We must drill and then drill some more until we locate every last drop of oil in our land, period.
Then what?
Beweldered

Leavittsburg, OH

#3 May 17, 2010
Why does everybody want to make ethanol out of corn ,soybeans, etc. when a less expensive and replacement yields more per acre and grows naturaly from canada down to mexico, this natural wonder is 'switch grass'.

Since: Oct 09

Columbus, OH

#4 May 17, 2010
The digestors are a great idea, however, we should not use this as an excuse to create more factory farms that foul the soil and water and abuse animals.
Also, you have to be careful with monoculture crops-it would only take one bug to wipe them out. It also hurts the state's natural areas if a farmer is taking land out of easement (or not putting it in).
Taxes2death

Chicago, IL

#5 May 17, 2010
Grat idea...but it's only a 'dream'. The same people who preach about this sort of thing about how it's great, are the same ones that makes excuses of not building them when it gets close to their back yard. Try to put up a solar panel or a windmill on your own property. Good luck! The township, city, state, or feds always step in and shut it down. Look at how the kennedys fought tooth and nail to get windmills not to be built off the coast of massachutsetts after screaming for years for new energy sources. The hypocrisy in this country is all but enough to keep green energy to move forward (and cost regulations).
Globalwarmer

Maumee, OH

#6 May 17, 2010
onlyincolumbus wrote:
<quoted text>Then what?
Free market economics will take care of it, not the government. If we run out of oil, say 100 years from now, the gradually rising price (in a free market environment) will drive the development of efficient alternatives. Of course, people have been saying we're going to run out of oil for decades now, but we never seem to even though we have effectively stopped drilling (thanks to our wonderful EPA and other bureaucrats who always think they can do it better than market forces).
Post4Pups

Lancaster, OH

#7 May 17, 2010
Factory farms are not the "green" answer to our energy problems. In fact, pastured livestock are much more ecofriendly. Using genetically motified (GM) corn and soybeans is not ecofriendly either. Livestock fed a steady diet GM products and given antibiotics is not healthy for man or beast. In addition, the loss of honeybees and butterflies are linked to the industry. The seeds are treated with Roundup which makes the plant toxic to both humans and other life. Monsanto has claimed up to 90% of this seed industry, too. American farmers have little choice in buying seed today. Some years ago in Africa, starving villages of people refused to take these GM foods. What does that tell you about these products? South American countries are using biofuels but they use sugar cane and switch grass. Let's cut back on corn. Less factory farming, please. It's not "Green."

Since: Oct 09

Columbus, OH

#8 May 17, 2010
Post4Pups wrote:
Factory farms are not the "green" answer to our energy problems. In fact, pastured livestock are much more ecofriendly. Using genetically motified (GM) corn and soybeans is not ecofriendly either. Livestock fed a steady diet GM products and given antibiotics is not healthy for man or beast. In addition, the loss of honeybees and butterflies are linked to the industry. The seeds are treated with Roundup which makes the plant toxic to both humans and other life. Monsanto has claimed up to 90% of this seed industry, too. American farmers have little choice in buying seed today. Some years ago in Africa, starving villages of people refused to take these GM foods. What does that tell you about these products? South American countries are using biofuels but they use sugar cane and switch grass. Let's cut back on corn. Less factory farming, please. It's not "Green."
Nicely stated. Roundup also devastates amphibian populations.

We do need to be careful about using other countries as an example, though. Brazil has infringed upon the rainforest to make room for more sugar cane. Indonesia has decimated its rainforest to meet the demand for biofuels in Europe.
Dirk

Columbus, OH

#9 May 17, 2010
Post4Pups wrote:
Factory farms are not the "green" answer to our energy problems. In fact, pastured livestock are much more ecofriendly. Using genetically motified (GM) corn and soybeans is not ecofriendly either. Livestock fed a steady diet GM products and given antibiotics is not healthy for man or beast. In addition, the loss of honeybees and butterflies are linked to the industry. The seeds are treated with Roundup which makes the plant toxic to both humans and other life. Monsanto has claimed up to 90% of this seed industry, too. American farmers have little choice in buying seed today. Some years ago in Africa, starving villages of people refused to take these GM foods. What does that tell you about these products? South American countries are using biofuels but they use sugar cane and switch grass. Let's cut back on corn. Less factory farming, please. It's not "Green."
Well said.
really

Columbus, OH

#11 May 17, 2010
The real story is the hundreds of millions being dumped by the state into research. Why? The global warming hoax that's being perpetuated by none other than universities and institutions that rely so much on state funding.
That's right, the very same people who benefit from - whose jobs depend on - government money scream the loudest about climate change.
A better story would have been examining the money that's dumped into these alternative energy schemes and seeing why nothing has worked better than fossil fuels.
Well, that would ruin the narrative: Government solves problems. People in government do so for the public good. They're not greedy, rigid idealogues. They're here to help.
Concerned Citizen

Columbus, OH

#12 May 17, 2010
Post4Pups wrote:
Factory farms are not the "green" answer to our energy problems. In fact, pastured livestock are much more ecofriendly. Using genetically motified (GM) corn and soybeans is not ecofriendly either. Livestock fed a steady diet GM products and given antibiotics is not healthy for man or beast. In addition, the loss of honeybees and butterflies are linked to the industry. The seeds are treated with Roundup which makes the plant toxic to both humans and other life. Monsanto has claimed up to 90% of this seed industry, too. American farmers have little choice in buying seed today. Some years ago in Africa, starving villages of people refused to take these GM foods. What does that tell you about these products? South American countries are using biofuels but they use sugar cane and switch grass. Let's cut back on corn. Less factory farming, please. It's not "Green."
What is your definition of a "Factory Farm"?
Chief Jesus

Bellaire, OH

#13 May 17, 2010
really wrote:
The real story is the hundreds of millions being dumped by the state into research. Why? The global warming hoax that's being perpetuated by none other than universities and institutions that rely so much on state funding.
That's right, the very same people who benefit from - whose jobs depend on - government money scream the loudest about climate change.
A better story would have been examining the money that's dumped into these alternative energy schemes and seeing why nothing has worked better than fossil fuels.
Well, that would ruin the narrative: Government solves problems. People in government do so for the public good. They're not greedy, rigid idealogues. They're here to help.
Research my eye. Just dig baby dig. I completely trust BP and the other big oil conglomerates to forego profit to make sure they don't harm the environment. After all , a few billions of barrels of oil leaking from a pipeline too deep in the ocean to fix is just a minor problem and an important part of the free market economy. Anyone offenged by this is just flat out un-American.
Abe Froman

Columbus, OH

#14 May 17, 2010
DrC Ohio wrote:
<quoted text>
Nicely stated. Roundup also devastates amphibian populations.
We do need to be careful about using other countries as an example, though. Brazil has infringed upon the rainforest to make room for more sugar cane. Indonesia has decimated its rainforest to meet the demand for biofuels in Europe.
Do not be quick to pass judgment. Roundup and GM Roundup Ready crops have led to a dramatic increase in the use of conservation and no-till production practices. These practices reduce soil erosion and improve surface water quality. In addition, conservation tillage improves soil water retention and mineral nutrition. Also, Roundup is less toxic and less mobile than alternative herbicides.

Roundup is not without faults, but it is better than the alternatives.

Since: Oct 09

Columbus, OH

#15 May 17, 2010
Concerned Citizen wrote:
<quoted text>
What is your definition of a "Factory Farm"?
Here is a map of Ohio's confined animal feeding operations:

http://www.epa.ohio.gov/portals/35/cafo/Facil...

I like Wikipedia's definition:

Factory farming is the practice of raising livestock in confinement at high stocking density, where a farm operates as a factory a practice typical in industrial farming by agribusinesses.[1][2][3][4][5] The main product of this industry is meat, milk and eggs for human consumption.[6]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Factory_farming

CAFOs/factory farms are not very nice places.
http://www.nrdc.org/water/pollution/factor/st...

Since: Oct 09

Columbus, OH

#16 May 17, 2010
Abe Froman wrote:
<quoted text>
Do not be quick to pass judgment. Roundup and GM Roundup Ready crops have led to a dramatic increase in the use of conservation and no-till production practices. These practices reduce soil erosion and improve surface water quality. In addition, conservation tillage improves soil water retention and mineral nutrition. Also, Roundup is less toxic and less mobile than alternative herbicides.
Roundup is not without faults, but it is better than the alternatives.
Show me where it does not hurt wildlife and I won't be quick to judge. No-till farming is a good thing, problem is if the farmer isn't adjusting the amount of pesticides she/he is spreading, it washes right into the stream and you loose any water quality benefits. I'm all for no till, but don't confuse that with pesticide use.
John

Dublin, OH

#17 May 17, 2010
To all of the naysayers here: What exactly would you do to move Ohio's economy to whatever comes after manufacturing?? Manufacturing will NEVER come back. It is in China and every other cheap labor country in the world. Every great idea through history has had people who scoff at it because of their ignorance. People made fun of Edison's search for the light bulb and the Wright Brothers' quest for powered flight. If we bury our heads in the sand and wait for Ohio's glorious manufacturing past to return, we are doomed.

“So far left, I'm right”

Since: Aug 09

Location hidden

#18 May 17, 2010
large scale agribusinesses like dairy farms are not "green" in any sense of the term...sigh, couldn't maybe ohio pick technology as the direction it moves in? maybe go forward into the 21st century instead of sliding down a manure pile into the 19th?
Bill

Columbus, OH

#19 May 17, 2010
Globalwarmer wrote:
<quoted text>
Free market economics will take care of it, not the government.....
Free market economics, loosening of regulations by the Bush-Cheny administration, and cheap energy have given us disasters in the Gulf of Mexico and West Virginia mines so far this spring.
Concerned Citizen

Columbus, OH

#20 May 17, 2010
DrC Ohio wrote:
<quoted text>
Here is a map of Ohio's confined animal feeding operations:
http://www.epa.ohio.gov/portals/35/cafo/Facil...
I like Wikipedia's definition:
Factory farming is the practice of raising livestock in confinement at high stocking density, where a farm operates as a factory a practice typical in industrial farming by agribusinesses.[1][2][3][4][5] The main product of this industry is meat, milk and eggs for human consumption.[6]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Factory_farming
CAFOs/factory farms are not very nice places.
http://www.nrdc.org/water/pollution/factor/st...
So, help me understand, it is possible for a family farm (husband & wife) to be a factory farm if they use a state of the art barn which limits access to parasites and other diseases simply because the livestock is confined and raised as food.

It is interesting to point out that significanly less antibotics are used with this type of farming operation. Did you know that?

Oh, by the way, have you ever been inside one of these "factory farms"? Most of the farmers that I know would be happy to give you a personal tour.

The vast majority of these types of barn are owned and operated by family farms. Did you know that or do you even care about the families on the family farm?

It still the family farm, you just haven't been home in while!

Abe Froman

Columbus, OH

#21 May 17, 2010
DrC Ohio wrote:
<quoted text>
Show me where it does not hurt wildlife and I won't be quick to judge. No-till farming is a good thing, problem is if the farmer isn't adjusting the amount of pesticides she/he is spreading, it washes right into the stream and you loose any water quality benefits. I'm all for no till, but don't confuse that with pesticide use.
1. Roundup is a unique herbicide. It affects an enzyme pathway that exists in plants but not in animals. Therefore, the active ingredient in Roundup, glyphosate, is not toxic to animals except at extreme doses. The following is a quote from the summary of a recent article in a scientific journal:

"Glyphosate in the environment tends to bind tightly to soil and particulate matter and is essentially unavailable to plants and other soil organisms... Glyphosate does not bioconcentrate in fish or other animals... For terrestrial use of Roundup, minimal acute and chronic risk was predicted for potentially exposed nontarget organisms. The following taxa were evaluated: aquatic microorganisms, aquatic marcophytes, aquatic invertebrates, warm and cold water fish, amphibians (tadpoles), soil microorganisms, soil invertebrates, birds, and mammals." Giesy, J., S. Dobson and K. Solomon. 2000. Ecotoxicological risk assessment for roundup (R) herbicide. Reviews of Environmental Contamination and Toxiocology, Volume 167:35-120.

2. The water quality benefits of no till are not associated with pesticide runoff. No till reduces soil erosion. Soil erosion leads to cloudy water and siltation of creek and river beds, among other problems.

3. No till and pesticide use are inextricably linked. Farmers have to use some method of weed control. Before roundup and GM roundup ready crops, weed control was primarily accomplished through tillage. With roundup ready systems, farmers perform post planting weed control by spraying roundup.

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