In the search for clean electricity, power companies in Finland are going green by way of brown, and have set their sights on a previously untapped energy source: animal dung.
During this month’s FEI World Cup showjumping qualifier at Helsinki International Horse Show, 100 tonnes of manure was loaded up and wheelbarrowed into two large containers before being carted away for incineration at the Järvenpää power plant.
The 150 megawatts of energy generated is enough to power the whole four-day show, with some left over to heat homes in the Finnish capital, according to energy company Fortum which launched its “Horse Power” initiative five years ago.
“There are so many horses in Finland and of course many more around the world, so it would be amazing if we could turn all that poo into energy,” Fortum’s Krista Hellgren told AFP.
The company claims that the manure produced daily by two horses can generate heat for a single family home for a year.
And just 200 millilitres’ worth is enough to charge a phone.