Can cow farts power cars?

This is what happens when I have a telephone conversation with my cousin, Thomas Spear. Things pop up and pop down at hyperspeed.

Today, our conversation included how Mother Mary is honored in Lyons, France starting on December 8 each year and continuing for four days, during which there are lit candles in windows everywhere. She is honored either because she got her hands into a plague resurgence or the immaculate conception, only one of which is, in my opinion, historically verifiable.

Senior Metrocards!

And then there’s Thomas’s new coffee maker which, as we talked on the phone, decided to act without Thomas’s explicit instruction (I could hear the noise), which got us to foamed milk, which took us to Montréal cafés and their foamed milk — Wisconsin, where Thomas hails from, was cited right there because of dairy, and dairy brought us to cows and climate change and farts and methane.

So that’s when one of us asked the question, can the methane emitted by farting cows be useful somehow?

I’m sort of annoyed now that I suggested we’re all intellectuals and can be intellectuals easily because of Google, and that omnipresent shout when an unknown subject pops up, “Google it!!” Or “Google!” for short. (Maybe we can shorten it to “Goo!!” eventually.) Anyway, I’ve always gotten pleasure from such flights of fancy such as cow farts and methane without actually having to answer the question. But now I feel shoved into digging up the cow shit to see what emerges. Bad me.

My first problem is, I don’t really know what methane is or does or can do.

Methane. It is bad. But can it be used for something?

Well, when mixed with air it can explode into flames. That does not seem useful in the good sense of the word “useful.” So I Googled “uses of methane” and got this, advising how we can and must cut methane because it’s bad.

Geez. I’ve learned we can cut methane by not throwing out so much useful food and composting what we’re not eating. Cows’ diets have been changed to reduce their burbage and fartage.

But can methane from wherever power vehicles?

NASA says yes!!! ⇑⇑⇑ and ⇓⇓⇓

Beech Aircraft Corporation’s Boulder Division has designed and is producing a system for converting cars and trucks to liquid methane operation.

So now I’ve got to work on a kind of cow diaper and face mask with pipes attached to ferry the methane into a storage system where the gas will be converted to liquid…which can be used to power cars. Or maybe cows.

Or maybe I should default to Beech Aircraft’s expertise. They seem to have gone beyond cow diapers.

In any case, it seems that Google has not succeeded in its evil plan to stomp cruelly on my imagination.

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2 Responses to Can cow farts power cars?

  1. Rudi Konrath says:

    Well, the cows around here are wearing a methane bag front and back. To capture the gas. Only joking. 😂
    As for Lyon, famous for its culinary talents, so, no wonder Mary has four days of accolade. Big lunches, bigger dinners. Read Bill Buford on Lyon.
    Hope you are well!

    • Naomi says:

      I want a photo of those cows. I think Buford’s Lyon writing appeared in the New Yorker, didn’t it? I sort of remember he apprenticed at a baker? It seemed like a lot of work. I am well. I made risotto last night; it was good.

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