Chicken poop to the environmental rescue

Hatched: Friday, February 19th, 2010

Few, if any, envisioned the day when Chicken Little could put his worries to rest and just do his business knowing that, with a little help from an innovative poultry farmer, his poop was as good as gold.

Then consider Josh Frye among the few.

The West Virginia poultry farmer has tinkered and toyed with a contraption that contains, heats and converts poultry waste into energy to heat his barns. The byproduct of that process is “biochar” – which is a naturally organic fertilizer. The upside of biochar is that it doesn’t release greenhouse gasses from waste into the atmosphere. Instead, the carbon is contained in the waste and the biochar can be used to fertilize and fuel other green plants that naturally suck more carbon out of the atmosphere. Call it a natural win-win for Mother Nature.

Then consider that Al Gore – the mastermind behind “An Inconvenient Truth” – calls biochar “one of the most exciting new strategies” available to stop climate change, with other environmentalists, scholars and legislators also recognizing its potential.

Imagine…manure to save the planet and environmentalism home grown on the family farm. It’s a far cry from the doom and gloom some groups are quick to suggest about animal agriculture, with solutions that are as equally unimaginative as they are short-sighted and impractical.

Ingenuity, innovation and hard work. Traits synonymous with the family farmer…or the bureaucrat? You decide.

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