Published on June 3rd, 2014 | by Derek Markham


New System Turns Cow Manure Into Clean Water

June 3rd, 2014 by  

Editor’s Note: We’ve written about turning cow manure into electricity many times (see here, here, here, and here, for example). But here’s another way cow manure can be more useful for humans: the creation of clean water. Read more in this Ecopreneurist repost:

New System Turns Cow Manure into Clean Water (via Ecopreneurist)

By combining an anaerobic digester with a filtration and reverse osmosis system, an idea that began to be developed at Michigan State University (MSU) matured into a system that can turn cow manure into clean water, while also capturing essential nutrients…

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About the Author

lives in southwestern New Mexico and digs bicycles, simple living, organic gardening, sustainable lifestyle design, slacklining, bouldering, and permaculture. He loves good food, with fresh roasted chiles at the top of his list of favorites. Catch up with Derek on Twitter, Google+, or at his natural parenting site, Natural Papa!

  • rollzone

    Hello. Another baited article. Does this ane
    Aerobic process take 3 months/gallon of potable water, and if these nutrients were dangerous to the environment, why are they being re-used instead of disposed?

    • Calamity_Jean

      Disposed of how? Matter can be neither created nor destroyed.

      The nutrients are beneficial in the right place in the right amount, and only harmful if they are in the wrong place or over-applied in the right place.

  • Offgridmanpolktn

    While it is definitely not wanting to criticize the use of this in places that do have water shortage or contamination problems it causes other concerns. Like with any new tech and its high costs it is my fear that this will mainly be used by the big feed lot factory farms and make possible the continuation of their production using to many steroids and antibiotics in our food supply.

    • JimBouton

      You have to wonder whether the hormones and antibiotics pooped out of the cows would be in the makeup of the fertilizer that was produced.

      The large factory farms have really been suffering the last two years in Texas. Not enough water to go around due to the droughts and the number of cattle has really diminished in West Texas. A big reason beef prices have been climbing.

      • Offgridmanpolktn

        That was the problem found when doing water tests in London this year. In the fresh water supply measurable amounts of antibiotics, steroids, even cocaine and other illicit drugs.

    • tmac1

      agreed , even “grass fed” cows consume prodigious amounts of water, both directly and indirectly for feed lot. Stop dairy and beef farms and there would be no manure and no water shortages.

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