In the past five years, biofuels have fallen out of favor as plug-in cars have taken center stage, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a place at the table for biofuels. Britain’s poop-powered bus not only makes use of naturally-occurring methane to power public transportation, it’s also setting land speed records too, reports the BBC.
Granted, that speed record is limited to British buses, and at 76.785 MPH, it’s not what one would call a blistering pace. It is, however, fast enough to set a new record for buses, a record worthy of the former hosts of Top Gear, and the 76 MPH top speed is about 20 MPH faster than the bus is typically limited to. The only modification was the removal of the speed limiter, allowing the black-and-white bus to reach the same speeds most people drive during their regular commute.
Operated by Reading Buses, the “Bus Hound” uses methane fuel is sourced from recycled animal waste. The name was inspired by the Bloodhound land speed record streamliner, and while the 76 MPH record is the fastest in Britain, to be a Guinness Book of World Records contender, the methane-powered bus would have to go more than 150 MPH. It’s not the only poop-powered bus in operation in Britain either.
So it’s not a world record, and it’s really not all that fast. Some people also don’t think natural gas is clean enough for transportation use, but I guess it depends on your definition of “natural gas”. Using fracking to obtain natural gas, probably a bad idea. But capturing and reusing the natural gas from cow, pig, and other forms of manure to power large commercial vehicles like buses and big rigs? Well, that methane is going to enter the atmosphere either way, so why not get some use out of it first?