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Last Updated: Friday, 22 October, 2004, 21:16 GMT 22:16 UK
Can dung power save the world?
Imagine a car that runs not on petrol or diesel but on the waste we either throw away or leave to rot in the ground.

Organic car
This car runs on organic fuel
A car powered by manure has been the star of a major international conference in County Fermanagh on how Biogas technology can help to save the planet.

Designed by the man who pioneered lead-free petrol, it is so green it pumps out only water and carbon dioxide, and most surprisingly, it does not smell.

Christopher Maltin, whose company manufactures the fuel, is convinced this technology will change the world.

"It is without doubt the most environmentally-friendly fuel available to man," he said.

"This is the fuel of the future - this gives you fuel which you can make locally, with security of supply.

"It is not a fossil fuel that comes from Saudi Arabia or Russia or anywhere abroad - you can actually make this fuel locally in Ireland."

The environmental implications seem to be enormous.

Christopher Maltin
Car designer Christopher Maltin pioneered unleaded petrol
Biogas takes the waste that we all dump and turns it into a cheap, clean, renewable fuel that helps reduce the greenhouse effect.

"Every bit of organic material on the planet eventually rots, and that methane goes up to the atmosphere.

"This is 21 times worse than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas.

"If you capture this methane and use it as a fuel, it is such a win-win situation. That is what we're doing."

Alan Burke of Dungannon District Council said that, as a large rural local authority, they had experienced many problems with the local agricultural industry such as slurry management and food waste disposal.

"Recently, as have other councils, we have huge problems in dealing with the organic fraction of our municipal waste," he said.

"Biogas provides a solution to all of those."

Mr Maltin said that whenever he pioneered unleaded petrol he was told it would never catch on.

He now believes the Biogas revolution is inevitable and unstoppable.

BBC NI's Daryl Grimason reports
"The environmental implications are enormous"

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