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Recycle Dog Poop?

Dog poop recycling initiatives could turn your dog poop into energy!

You could soon be using your Dicky Bags to transport your dog poop hygienically and odour free to a recycling area near you…

6,500 tons of dog poop is produced in the San Francisco Bay Area every year.

“Scraping dog poop off your shoe, now that’s something most people have been frustrated with for a long time,” said Robert Reed, a Norcal spokesperson.  “Now we have an opportunity to turn this nuisance into something positive.”

The plan to recycle pet waste followed a recent study, which found that animal feces make up 3.8 percent of the garbage from residential collections in San Francisco.

“The city saw this percentage and said to us, We need to get down to zero [waste to landfills], so we want you to start thinking about how to collect the dog waste and what can be done with it,'” Reed said. The high percentage is not surprising considering that San Francisco is home to an estimated 120,000 dogs, far more than there are children.

Almost 10 million tons (9 million metric tons) of dog and cat waste is generated annually in the U.S., according to William Brinton, president of Woods End Laboratories in Mount Vernon, Maine. The lab specializes in analyzing compost and other waste.

Stefan Lovgren
for National Geographic News March 21, 2006