Saturday, December 8, 2012

NC hog farms lure server farms

As all long-time NC residents know, we are the second largest hog producing state in the country, which means we also have an abundance of what I will politely call hog waste.  This has been a blight on our water supply and landscape for some time.

But this story I saw cited on Real Clear Markets says that there is a silver lining to the black ponds of hog waste: an alternate source of energy that is attracting the likes of Apple and Google to the state.  Apple is looking at using hog waste to claim renewable energy credits to power its new facility in Maiden NC.  Google is partnering with Duke Energy and researchers at Duke University to determine how much power can be extracted hog waste. 

I find it quite ironic that as much as we pride ourselves in all of the high tech activity in the RTP energy, it might be the byproducts of a traditional industry that help draw even more high tech activity to the state.  In economic terms, we can say that hog farms and server farms are complements in production. 

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