Heating homes with cowpats

Heating homes with cowpats

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In the run-up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, we are looking at unusual energy-saving initiatives.

The manure from one cow can provide enough fuel to heat seven houses.

Nij Bosma Zathe is an experimental Dutch farm with 200 dairy cows.

The manure these cows produce is used to make biogas. The gas is turned into electricity in a generator which feeds it into the national grid.

The heat this releases goes directly to houses in the new estate in Techum.

The heat arrives, through a grate in the wall, in Carla Koelstra's home five kilometres away.

"Just a push of the button and the house is warm," she says. Her children are surprised it doesn't smell: "They must use a lot of perfume on it."

As a result of the economic recession, not all the houses planned for this neighbourhood have been finished. Less than a hundred are now heated by means of biogas.

Marjolein Stoop
Radio Netherlands/Expatica


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