I once heard from a high-level corporate researcher at a 1983 biogas conference that Marco Polo’s writings mention masonry-covered digesters in China. I’ve now seen this claim suggested by couple folks I’ve mentioned it to. I’d certainly like it to be true, but it would be nice to verify through the original Italian source.

It seems most appropriate that China, the land of farmers for more than 40 centuries, is also the area of greatest effort toward the domestication of anaerobic digestion. For most cases, Chinese implementation of biogas replaces the burning of stalks – which may then be fed to pigs – or pressed coal briquets – with their ecosystem destruction, pollution, and climate chaos implications.

After working with early Chinese-design digesters in central West Virginia in the early 1980s (as discussed in OARS’ Efforts), I was fortunate enough to visit China with a University of Pennsylvania program in 1987. In an attempt to differentiate myself from the usual visitor just observing the multitude of efforts, I carried along a variety of hydrogen sulfide and sulfur dioxide testing materials. With these and great cooperation from very interested Chinese researchers, we were able to document significant kitchen air pollution benefits from AD.

Largely from that 1987 summer visit, I offer the following few images as most notable. While viewing, please keep in mind that efforts have been devoted to a full range of sizes and scales and that, from the early 1960s to the mid-1980s, there were literally millions of experiments conducted with family-scale systems -- resulting in many leaking failures but progressing through a couple generations of design and construction techniques.

Click on the next button, you will find detailed graphics. Please click on the links below for more documentation



Intro to OARS Approach History of OARS Carbon Cycle & Climate Chaos Soil Grownth vav Development
Intro to Ag Systems Intro to Semi-Cycle Returns Intro to Anaerobic Digestion Human Exploitation of AD OARS Manifestations Final Notes
China Elsewhere in Asia United States
Draco I Draco II Draco III Possibilities
Springcreek Elementary School Greenhouse Container Digester
Introduction to Tire Machine
Tire Road Tires in the Garden Other Tire Uses
About the Homebase Floor Plan The Drive In Walk Around Outside Walk Around Inside