Working on fuel from zoo doo

August 3, 2009 6:57:51 AM PDT
Researchers at Tulane University could have the inside scoop on beating the energy crisis -- zoo poop.

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The scientists are studying droppings from hippos, giraffes and other plant-eating animals. The zoo doo contains bacteria that helps turn plant waste into butanol, a type of alcohol that can fuel engines.

Eric Smith, associate director of the Tulane Energy Institute, says scientists scooping up zoo poop might look funny.

But he tells New Orleans CityBusiness that animals have been turning plants into energy long before people ever thought about doing it.

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