Detroit Zoo has $1 million manure plan

Capital News Service
Lansing — The Detroit Zoo plans to build a machine to effectively use one of its more plentiful resources — manure. The zoo’s proposed $1 million anaerobic biodigester would break down animal waste and produce a biogas as a source of electrical energy. It would be the first zoo-based biodigester built in North America. It could save the zoo around $70,000 to $80,000 in electricity per year, said Gerry VanAcker, the chief operating officer for the Detroit Zoo. Another $30,000 to $40,000 could be saved in operational costs, including cleanup, disposal and equipment expenses for the current waste-disposal process.

Yet another downside to big snow: pollution

Capital News Service
LANSING — Hoping for a quick thaw to escape the winter blues? Not so fast. A fast melt of accumulated snow could harm Michigan waters. The problem: Winter application of manure to farm fields. Rapidly melting snow runs off frozen ground and heads toward lakes and streams. It can carrying with it manure that sat on top of the snow.