British company unveils world’s first cow-dung-powered tractor

British company unveils world’s first cow-dung-powered tractor

Cornish clean energy solutions firm Bennamann has developed the first tractor in the world to be entirely powered by farmyard manure.

What goes around, comes around at a British farm which is turning cow dung into energy to take on climate change.

Bennamann, a UK-based company working to decarbonise agriculture, has developed the first tractor in the world to be completely powered by farmyard manure.

The 270bhp New Holland T7 tractor captures “fugitive methane” (emissions that would have otherwise escaped from cow dung) and converts it into biofuel.

British company unveils world’s first cow-dung-powered tractor
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This is achieved by treating and compressing the highly-potent greenhouse gas for use as liquid fuel.

Bennamann co-founder Chris Mann told The Telegraph that this technology could potentially revolutionise emission management by removing large amounts of methane from the atmosphere.

"The T7 liquid methane-fuelled tractor is a genuine world-first and another step towards decarbonizing the global agricultural industry and realizing a circular economy,” he said.

Methane is 84 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2) over a 20-year period, according to the United Nations Environment Programme.

At a time when farms are increasingly under pressure from the UK government to decarbonise, the tractor can give its diesel alternatives a run for their money if its performance is anywhere as good as promised by the Cornish maker.

A pilot study conducted by Bennaman in 2022 found that the T7 prototype tractor can reduce carbon emissions from 2,500 tonnes to 500 tonnes, without comprising on its capabilities.

The UK has signed off on a legally-binding target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, as have a handful of other big emitters to in a joint effort to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels — a widely-accepted climate threshold beyond which the risk of extreme heat, droughts, floods and other extreme weather events could dramatically increase.

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