Published on February 17th, 2009 | by Ariel Schwartz2
Cattle Carcasses Heat British Town
February 17th, 2009 by Ariel Schwartz
A Swedish town announced last month that it will use cremated bodies to provide heat, and now the British town of Reepham has decided to heat many of its buildings by burning oil made from melted cow and pig carcasses. Are dead bodies— human or otherwise— the next big thing in heating?
Probably not, since carcasses and crematoriums are in limited supply. But Reepham’s scheme, at least, has a relatively low carbon footprint.
The town is using cooking oil and tallow (melted fatty remains) mixed with fossil fuels to make a biofuel blend. Eighty percent of tallow’s carbon footprint comes from making the animals and their fat, so why not use the carcasses if people will eat the meat beforehand anyway?
Children in Reepham schools will have the chance to observe cuts in carbon emissions with energy monitors placed in each classroom, but it’s doubtful that the kids will find out exactly where their heat is coming from.