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AP Trumpets CO2 Emitting Dog Poop Lamp

From the devoted but unschooled followers of Gaia at the Associated Press:

Dog poop has bright side: Powering Mass. park lamp

By Jay Lindsay, Associated Press Writer Wed Sep 22, 2010

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – It stinks and it’s a hazard to walkers everywhere, but it turns out dog poop has a bright side.

Dog poop is lighting a lantern at a Cambridge dog park as part of a months long project that its creator, artist Matthew Mazzotta, hopes will get people thinking about not wasting waste.

The "Park Spark" poop converter is actually two steel, 500-gallon oil tanks painted a golden yellow, connected by diagonal black piping and attached to an old gaslight-style street lantern at the Pacific Street Park.

After the dogs do their business, signs on the tanks instruct owners to use biodegradable bags supplied on site to pick up the poop and deposit it into the left tank. People then turn a wheel to stir its insides, which contain waste and water. Microbes in the waste give off methane, an odorless gas that is fed through the tanks to the lamp and burned off. The park is small but has proven busy enough to ensure a steady supply of fuel.

Would it be too cynical to note that burning methane is dangerous? When you burn methane you release carbon di-oxide and water (see below). And we have been told by the ‘global warmists’ that carbon di-oxide is the most dangerous substance on the planet.

So what is the point of this exercise, except to make people think they are doing good when they are actually doing harm to Mother Earth?

Dog owner Lindsey Leason, a 29-year-old Harvard student, said she was all for seeing poop in a new light as she watched her two dogs play at the park.

"Since I have to pick up dog poop a lot, I think I’d rather have it be useful," Leason said.

The project was funded by a $4,000 grant from Council of the Arts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where Mazzotta earned a master’s degree in visual studies last year

Oh, we see. It’s all about the ‘optics.’ It’s "art." So it doesn’t really whether it is actually good for the planet or not.

A similar idea to use dog poop for power was floated in San Francisco about four years ago. But that idea fizzled in the city’s bureaucracy and over concerns about safety, said environmental scientist Will Brinton, who worked with Mazzotta on Park Spark and was consulted in the San Francisco project.

Cambridge Fire Chief Gerry Reardon had his own questions about "Park Spark," including whether vandalism or poor design could cause the tank’s insides to spill out and how the methane would be safely contained and vented. But Park Spark’s sturdy build and safety features persuaded the fire department to give its approval, he said.

"We try to stay progressive here," Reardon said

This is the epitome of your typical progressive. They are stupid — and smug about it.

But just wait until they get their first lawsuit. And by rights it should come from the EPA or some environmental group like the Sierra Club.

From the website of the Natural Gas Supply Association:

The Combustion of Methane

When we say that methane is combustible, it means that it is possible to burn it. Chemically, this process consists of a reaction between methane and oxygen. When this reaction takes place, the result is carbon dioxide (CO2), water (H2O), and a great deal of energy


This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

15 Responses to “AP Trumpets CO2 Emitting Dog Poop Lamp”

  1. AcornsRNutz says:

    That’s mass for you. I am ticking off the days on my calendar until I can leave this haven of absolute stupidity.

    But for the sake of argument, wouldn’t gaia be less affected by simply lettinghte poop break down and enrich the soil instead of burning it to release gas and light up a park that was made where a forest once was? A light you wouldn’t even need if you were not there, in which case you wouldn’t step in poop, in which case the poop could stay there and do its natural job of fertilizing?

    On the other hand, Cambridge is so full of crap this seems like something they would have thought of earlier (inevitable joke, beat you to it)

  2. Right of the People says:

    “Dog owner Lindsey Leason, a 29-year-old Harvard student, said she was all for seeing poop in a new light as she watched her two dogs play at the park.”

    “The project was funded by a $4,000 grant from Council of the Arts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where Mazzotta earned a master’s degree in visual studies last year…”

    First, a 29 year old Harvard student? I wonder is she ever hoping to leave school and become a contributing member of society? I think not.

    Second, what in the hell are visual studies? Sounds like another field guaranteed to lead to unemployment and a masters degree in it too????

    This sort of crap is what is fundamentally wrong with the left. They get degrees in “cool” subjects like women’s studies, visual studies, basket weaving and all kinds of other crap that doesn’t translate into anything the world needs. And the do their little projects with grant money in other words other peoples money. I’m willing to bet MIT got the initial funding that paid for this clowns “experiment”. It’s call pass-through, the educational institution gets money from the feds then the dole it out for crap like this. Nice to know our tax dollars are going to burn dog poop.

    • AcornsRNutz says:

      Burning dog poop for energy or enslaving human leeches to the perpetual ruling class government via welfare. Both stink, so I have a solution. I won’t elaborate, as it may be my ticket to vast riches someday, but I’ll hint that it is a combination, a “hybrid” of the better elements of the above.

  3. proreason says:

    I want a Progressive kaka electicity generator to power my house.

    Progressives will be able to come to my house and deposit their own kaka in my bright yellow drum, and I’ll convert it into electricity and methane.

    The really dedicated liberals will have the option to inhale as much kaka methane bi-product as they like so that their lungs can aborb it into their bloodstreams and decompose it. That way the methane will never be burned and won’t destroy the planet. Liberals should view that as a great side benefit, in addition to not contaminating the water supply with their own waste products. It’s a win win win win win. A progressive dream. And even more practical than their other plans to micro-manage our lives.

    And sniffing the methane will probably improve a lot of liberal brains as well.

    • hushpuppy says:


      Progressives have been sniffing their own farts for a very long time. That’s why their ideas are so ass-inine. *ahem*

      Probably explains progressive’s addiction to brown-nosing…

  4. jobeth says:

    I’m sorry…I just don’t get it. Of course I’m not a lefty…so that may explain it…but….

    So…If I understand it…they have two drums…that could leak… where by people pick up their dogs poop…drop it in…stir it up…and release it to another tank (real eye candy, I’m sure…along with nose candy).

    From then on it is burned off to light a lamp. Why? Why do they need a light in the daytime in an outdoor park?
    Oh…they might burn it at night? Why? Why do they need a light at night in a park that is empty and closed?

    As someone else said…wouldn’t a few flowerbeds in the park be a better choice?

    Still, all this time I couldn’t figure out why lefties had such a strange smell. At least THAT question got an answer.

  5. jobeth says:

    I can see it now…You grab your fluffy bath towel, your glass of wine, set up your soft gentle music on the way to your bubble bath.You turn down the dimmer on your bathroom lights (while you still can). You step in the bubble covered warm water and slide so lazily down into the water.

    And not to forsake your wonderfully scented candle , uh dog poop lamp, you light it and set it on the back edge of the tub…

    Uhhh, Something’s different…sniff…sniff…what possibly could be the matter…?

  6. untrainable says:

    A similar idea to use dog poop for power was floated in San Francisco about four years ago. Nobody noticed for all the other crap floating in San Francisco.

  7. Georgfelis says:

    It’s not as weird and as leftist as it seems. In India its called Gobar Gas (which I admit sounds funny). The Michael Yon article linked has a good description and photos, although the Indians put them below ground where they won’t be so obvious. And after having stepped in a few “presents” in the parks myself, anything that will get people to pick up after their pets is worth trying.

  8. hushpuppy says:

    Why stop at just dog poo? Cats crap all over the place as do raccoons and skunks? They sh*t all over the place… and judging by all the bovine excrement on Capital Hill – we could have gas lamps lit across America like at the turn of the 20th Century before electricity! Wow! Back to the future!

    Now if we could harness all the hot air from politicians and Hollyweird, boy howdy the planet would be set! Imagine: It’s biodegradable, self-renewing – just one itty-bitty problem and that’s the cost to feed politicians. Ah well… I’m sure Algore will be able to come up with something, especially if he gets together with Michael Moore!

    Now speaking of crap – The postman walked in my dog’s poo and left it everywhere.

    Opalescent ostrich omelettes,
    Carbonated camel crap,
    Drippy doggy do,
    Putrid Polit poo
    Multicolor money muck

    I’m sure someone can come up with something for Algore and Barack Insane Obama (Mmm! Mmm! Mmm!)

  9. Rusty Shackleford says:

    Yet another idea whose time never really came.

    Assorted plumbing/hardware/tanks – $7,122.32

    Time lost from work for this “next big thing”- 2,056 hours.

    Dog poo- free

    Humiliation from the never ending laughter of friends, family, people who just plain know better- priceless

  10. $4000 could buy a lot of natural gas..

    OR.. at $0.15 per KW hour of Windmill produced electricity and with a 600 Watt lamp, $0.90 per day (approx 12 hour day) A little over ten years.. Maybe 11

    Fido would likely be dead before his recycled Alpo catches up.

    • jobeth says:

      That much $$ would be a good start on the instillation costs toward Solar Equipment. Which after installation is pretty much free…and if you have a big enough set up you might be able to sell it back to the Electric Company.

      But If these people were REALLY all about using “clean” fuel, they would first, take a gander of what each area of the country could best develop respective to their own resources perhaps use the money wasted on all the silly nonsensical stuff to develop solar so that it doesn’t cost a fortune to set up.

      I understand there are all kinds of new REAL technology out there that could bring the costs down…but who’s going to risk any investment now?

      Windmills are a joke…but not for the birds shredded by the blades and not to the folks who live with a constant noise of those giant blades.

      But in the end…for all the development ,we need to do in REAL alternative energy sources…we still will always need fossil fuels to back up the other sources when the wind won’t blow..and the sun doesn’t shine. We have plenty in this country. No need to go to foreign sources.

      I had to laugh though at the new solar generator ad on TV. Think about it. If you need it, it will be during or after a storm, like a hurricane. Or during a snow storm that killed your electric lines. You might have a bit of a problem trying to locate the sun during or even after one of those. lol.

  11. jimreport says:

    I think you could argue that the c02 is already there whether you burn the methane or it vented natualy from the pile. Also the co2 suspended in the food was drawn from the atmosphere. Pretty much a zero sum game until you add in the cost of those steel tanks. I’m thinking at least $1500 each plus about 10K to build the contraption. Not to mention maintenance to repaint the graffiti, and $3500 disposal cost when it rusts through in 15 years and spills “toxic waste” onto the ground or one month when someone pours gasoline into it, whichever comes first.

    So basically you have a $20,000 fix for a problem that should cost zero dollars to handle, mainly because a problem didn’t exist that needed a fix. On that note, order 100,000 and make people use them. Call it stimulus for the people. Banks and DNC get cash, we get a container to stir our dog s*&^.

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