Gallery: Chicken Manure to power 90,000 Homes in the Netherlands!


Here at Inhabitat we love to see innovative reuses for organic waste, and so we’re perpetually fascinated by the potential of poo to be used as a renewable source of energy. Last week Dutch agriculture minister Gerda Verburg announced a groundbreaking development for the field as she unveiled the world’s largest biomass power plant to run exclusively on poultry manure. The plant will convert a third of the nation’s chicken waste into energy while running at a capacity of 36.5 megawatts – enough to power 90,000 homes!

Part of the promise of biomass energy lies in its two-for-one benefit: it generates energy while disposing of waste. We’ve covered poo power schemes in the past, but never on such a massive scale!

Situated in Moerdijk, the 150 million euro plant was constructed by the Dutch multi-utility company Delta. It will convert roughly 440,000 tons of chicken manure into energy annually, generating more than 270 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The plant also addresses a key environmental problem in the Netherlands: “managing the vast excess stream of chicken manure, which, until today, had to be processed at a high cost”.

Delta‘s biomass plant has even been described as being carbon neutral, since it will prevent the manure from sitting in fields and seething greenhouse gases into the air. Once methane from the poultry waste has been extracted and ignited, the left over ash will be used to make fertilizers and other agricultural products.

Peter Boerma, the CEO of Delta states:
The biomass power plant is one of the strategic components of our energy mix, which includes a wide range of renewable sources, as well as nuclear power. This diverse energy mix is needed to meet the ever increasing demand for electricity, but for us, building a smart and clean fuel sourcing strategy is more than meeting the consumer’s demand, it is a matter of meeting our social obligations.
Photo credit:Paul de Lhama

+ Delta

Via Metaefficient and Checkbiotech


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  3. Muthusamy Arul December 8, 2009 at 8:19 am

    In my place 2.5 tons chiceken manure per day avilable, they keep it for sale upto 1year.Any body give idea regarding cheken manure power project is useful for us.howmuch cost,land,water,machinaries etc needed?

  4. babytiger09 February 15, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    I have to give a presentation on how chicken manure generates electricity, Does anyone know of any simple demonstrations that could be performed in front of the class or in a lab? thanks!

  5. dirtywhitehorse January 29, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    HI Allan ,
    I hail from Delaware too and I think there is a bit of Misunderstanding of the process in the wording in this story . When Pooh is digesting natually in a pile it gives off a methane gas Which can then be taken off and used like any other gas to heat homes . The leftover stuff is basically compost. I do not think this way of raising chickens is best . I think we need to pasture them and eat more vegetabkles as well as pay more for clean meats . I do think It IS possible however to Properly compost and use the resulting methane for fuel and the rest to improve soil since we do have a huge confinement animal industry in place. That IS a whole other thing than BURNING it and turning it into ASH :).Sharon (Sharons Natural Gardens )

  6. Alan Muller October 5, 2008 at 10:45 am

    You folks really got this story wrong.

    First, nothing but nuclear reactions can convert manure, or any other material, into energy. Burning it \”converts\” it into ash and air pollutants, with minimal energy recovery.

    Second, poultry poop incineration is a highly-polluting way to generate electricity while destroying a valuable agricultural resource.

    Alan Muller
    Green Delaware
    (A link to our site would be considered spam? Hmmmm….)

  7. theokobox September 9, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    If we could power the world on poop, the lights would never go out!!!

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