Cattails to fuel?

The Otero County Commission voted to spend $20,000 on a feasibility study to turn cattails into fuel during its regular meeting Thursday night. Full Story
First Prev
of 2
Next Last
Ron Jeske

Sonora, CA

#21 Jul 19, 2009
Stephen Klaber wrote:
The amount of this plant available worldwide for this is stunning. And almost everywhere it grows, it is currently a problem. Financing the control of cattails and similar weeds through the biofuels market would go a long ways toward stopping desertification, simply by removing the dessication machines and siltation machines that are causing it. This fuel resource is terrifyingly renewable.
It has been shown that even corn, which can be grown by the millions of tons, takes a lot of water to convert to a fuel additive. That is what has caused the demise of the ethanol plants that sprouted up as fast as a corn crop in the midwest a couple of years ago. Just inquire of the owners of those idle plants to see what the real situation is and compare that to what exists in Alamogordo. Those places sit idle because corn is more valuable as an animal feed or for use as food for people. The key is the water used for creation of the ethanol. The amount of water needed would make it virtually impossible to be a viable alternative in a desert environment. Unless, of course, you want to leave a few hundred people to run the plant and send everyone else to live elsewhere because they would have no water.

There are other plants, like sugarcane that is used in Brazil, that can grow abundantly and are not as harmful as the weed-like cattails. But even that crop needs water in amounts not available in the desert. When you can't insure enough water for the people in the area or their livestock, how can you entertain the prospects of an ethanol processing plant?

Since: Oct 08

.

#22 Jul 19, 2009
Stephen Klaber wrote:
The amount of this plant available worldwide for this is stunning. And almost everywhere it grows, it is currently a problem. Financing the control of cattails and similar weeds through the biofuels market would go a long ways toward stopping desertification, simply by removing the dessication machines and siltation machines that are causing it. This fuel resource is terrifyingly renewable.
BO should get right on this...green jobs...he will create or save many with this program. Go BO!!!!
Janet White

United States

#23 Jul 19, 2009
JMH3 wrote:
Another 20k will be wasted. Who came up with this lame idea anyway?....
This is Chairman Ronnie Rardin's.
Janet White

United States

#24 Jul 19, 2009
Ooops, I believe it is Ronny not Ronnie.
Cactus Flower

Alamogordo, NM

#25 Jul 19, 2009
What is the connection between Peggy Korth and Ronny Rardin?
Stephen Klaber

Canton, OH

#26 Jul 20, 2009
Several points to respond to: 1)Japan already imports raw material for paper making. If Typha waste works, and is cheaper, they'll happily buy it; 2)There are multiple ways to get energy from cattail. Some use more water than others. Charcoal production uses very little. "Straw -fired" Generators use only the generator water that any other steam generator uses. Ethanol uses more, but little of that is unrecoverable; 3) Harvesting wild cattail, which is most desperately needed, is a really labor intensive task in the mud. As a crop, it can be grown in ways that make harvesting easier. Peggy Korth, mentioned above, is the expert on that. But grown as a crop, it does not have the "water profit" that it has if you are harvesting it as a weed (this IS a dessication machine); 4) Growing it as a crop means that you can control what pollutants it is exposed to. The fact that it collects pollutants is the one real obstacle to making this plant the solution to the world food shortage. It is every bit productive enough, but it just loves to collect things like DDT and arsenic. That fact is about to be put to use in cleaning the drinking water in areas like Bangladesh, where the water is contaminated with arsenic. But if we can keep nasty stuff away from it (different plantations) this is an excellent food crop.
Bill H

Tularosa, NM

#27 Jul 23, 2009
mabe said commisioner was SOLD to push this agenda. cattails in the desert??? along side flowing waterways?? do we still have any??
I know the winos would scream bloody murder if anyone even suggests using GRAPES for fuel, even tho they are a natural alki producer. some bureacrats will allow themselves to be bought so cheaply. come on people, open your eyes .....

Since: Jun 09

Cape Coral, FL

#28 Jul 23, 2009
To quote JMH3 of Tularosa:

[Having extensive experience with cattails on our place along the Tularosa River, our place has some 10 natural springs that have been infested with cattails for years I will tell you this. Anyone nearby a "Cattail" farm nearby better hope they have no seeds blow onto their property if it has any water source because if it's wet they literally spread like the weeds that they are.
I would also like to know how they plan to harvest this amazingly profitable new "crop", who wants to wade in 4' of water all day whacking down cattails with a machete, nobody I know.
Salt cedars and cattails suck a lot of water out of riparian areas, we have a program to eradicate salt cedars, we may as well plan to add cattails as well if this ridiculous idea manages to move forward.
I say plant more cattails at Desert Lakes, wait 3-4 years and see how it goes.]

You make some good points. First, I must say that any study should include a discussion with you and a visit to your springs. I wonder how long there have been cattails at your springs? Let's say these plants are putting your springs at risk. You might be able to survive the loss of 1 or 2, but many others could not risk that loss.

If it is true that a spring, or any other natural body of water, is jeopardized by the introduction of cattails, they have to be eliminated.

The study is to look at the use of cattails to clean up reclaimed water and to make money from it. There is no sewer water shortage. So, it doesn't matter how destructive it is there. But, if cattails pose a danger anywhere else there is no way for them to prevent it. Because, as you point out, the seeds can fly for many miles. Such as in a the big whirlwinds that cross the desert from one community to another. Bottom line: I think this study should consider the impact of such a project, not just the financial gains from it.
Michael Morris

Tularosa, NM

#29 Apr 6, 2011
Any word on this? The county has spent thousands on the project and other prospects are being told the Otero County project is producing 1000 gallons per acre. It seems like that would be news. And yes the county is still paying regularly on the study.
tale tail

Santa Fe, NM

#30 Apr 7, 2011
Raptor Mom wrote:
It doesn't cost them squat to send an e-mail to their districts?
Now methane cost squat when you talk about 'tails.
Michael Morris

Tularosa, NM

#31 Apr 24, 2011
Has anyone seen the results of the study the county is paying for? Or are they secret? It seems as though this gal gets a couple of thousand every time she comes to visit with Rardin.

Since: Oct 08

.

#32 Apr 24, 2011
just another waste of taxpayers money by the morons on the commission...what a joke...

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker
First Prev
of 2
Next Last

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Tularosa Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
The Old Bowling Alley??? 1 hr GoombaCenter 7
Bill Cosby Defended 1 hr Nope 12
immigrants to be applicable to social security ... 4 hr AroundTheRim 5
Senate Schumer blasts B.O care. 5 hr Ralph 8
Persecution of the church 6 hr Mr Toot 262
Hardcore news don't make it in ruidoso news 9 hr Citizenx 1
Kerry folds to Iran 12 hr Ralph 8
Tularosa Dating
Find my Match

Tularosa People Search

Addresses and phone numbers for FREE

Tularosa News, Events & Info

Click for news, events and info in Tularosa

Personal Finance

Mortgages [ See current mortgage rates ]

NFL Latest News

Updated 4:00 am PST

Bleacher Report 4:00AM
Full Cardinals Preview for Falcons Game
Bleacher Report 4:18 AM
Full Chiefs Preview for Broncos Game
Bleacher Report 5:28 AM
Denver Broncos vs. Kansas City Chiefs Betting Odds, Analysis and NFL Pick
NBC Sports 5:39 AM
Larry Fitzgerald: I'm "highly likely" to play on Sunday
NFL 8:55 AM
Larry Fitzgerald: I'm 'highly likely' to play vs. Falcons