[permaculture] Fwd: [grazersedge] Re: Energy Reqs-Graze vs Grain

Mark mpludwig at facstaff.wisc.edu
Thu Mar 28 14:10:06 EST 2002

In light of our earlier talk on mathane I'll send this along.
Mark L

> > I don't see oil being used for ag as a problem.
> > However I would love to be able to blow methane
> > into my tractor as Mark Ludwig has suggested.
> >    I don't know how realistic it is but I would like to
> > see methane digesters get to the point that they are
> > cheap enough and small enough that they could be used
> > to power a small farm from that farms manure.
> >
> > Russ
> > WI
>You may know this,I'm not so sure the general public does, but the
>use of petroleum based products and natural gas are extremely high in
>agriculture.  I believe ag is the second biggest user next to
>transportation, but I could be wrong.  Regardless, it's a top user.
>It's not so much what we pour in our machines, but what is used
>directly/indirectly in producing fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides
>etc.  Some of the wetting agents for these sythetics continue to be
>petroleum based solvents such as napthalene.  Fertilizers such as
>anhydrous require huge volumes of natural gas.  The list is long.
>I didn't respond for that reason.  I met a man named Al Rutan who
>turned out to be the methane man.  (I didn't intend to make a song of
>it, that's just what came off the keyboard)!  He's a dairy farmer
>from Liberty Center Iowa.  He has successfully built small-scale
>methane digesters. He gave a presentation complete with diagrams and
>slides of his work.  He's a nuts and bolts kind of person.  I would
>venture to guess that much of his work has been emulated by the big
>boys.  I think you could say that he was methane, when methane wasn't
>cool!  He did a 5 part series of articles on it for Home Power
>Magazine.  They will allow you to download this information free,
>directly off the web.  They are at www.homepower.com  The articles
>are found as follows:
>Issue 26 page 24
>Issue 27 page 44
>Issue 28 page 39
>Issue 30 page 42
>Issue 40 page 82
>If a man had the initiative, I believe he could build himself a
>digester based on this information alone.
>Steve Heyer
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Mark P. Ludwig
Poultry Research Lab
University of Wisconsin -Madison
608-262-1730 WK
608-846-7125 HM

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