The future of renewable energy
I read an opinion piece in the West Central Tribune on Oct. 28 concerning renewable energy. My compliments to the writers, Sherry Ristau and Kevin Johnson of the Southwest Minnesota Foundation. I was elated because I have been writing energy arti...
I read an opinion piece in the West Central Tribune on Oct. 28 concerning renewable energy. My compliments to the writers, Sherry Ristau and Kevin Johnson of the Southwest Minnesota Foundation. I was elated because I have been writing energy articles in the papers for many years.
Renewable energy is of particular importance to southwestern Minnesota because we grow the corn and soybeans used to produce the two most important kinds of energy right here on our farms. We have diesel fuel and ethanol from soybeans and corn. These two agricultural crops can be grown in great quantities in southwestern Minnesota and thus increase the dollar amount that comes into this area of the state.
There are other forms of energy available to us, but it may be years before we are producing these. Methane gas is being produced in large quantities on every dairy farm and every lagoon that holds manure from pig operations. A vast amount of this gas is escaping into the air. If it could be incorporated into the production of large dairy farms, perhaps the dairy industry might return to Minnesota where it belongs.
Hydrogen gas is another renewable energy that we have the possibility of producing in Minnesota. Hydrogen-powered cars are coming, but it may take a long time. Hydrogen can come from water and, when burned, will return to water, thus causing zero pollution. I could go on and on about diesel fuel and ethanol, but for now I look forward to seeing future information about these two forms of renewable energy. I thank the Southwest Minnesota Foundation for this study.
- Doug Ketcham, Olivia