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A Pill for Global Warming?

Inside the belly of a ruminant.

Inside the belly of a ruminant.

The prize for the newest genius use of cow excretions and byproducts goes to the German scientists who have developed a pill to curb bovine burping. Cow burps are a perfectly natural result of having a rumen, which is a stomach where food is fermented and methane is released to eventually come out their mouths (among other places). Methane is a far stronger heat-trapping gas then carbon dioxide (20 times stronger, to be exact), and is a significant contributor to global warming. It also comes from other ruminants such as sheep, goats and buffalo, as well as from coal mining, drilling for oil and natural gas, landfills, burning forests and fields, and even living plants and thawing permafrost.

The fist-sized, anti-burp pill will have the added bonus of boosting the metabolism of the cows and increasing the amount of milk they produce. I wish I could say there was something in it for the cows, but once again they’re just machines being tweaked for maximum milk output.

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