What is a convenient way to get rid of an overpopulation of rabbits and stay warm at the same time? Well, Sweden has found the answer! Starting in 2006, the country began controlling its multiplying rabbit population and using the resulting carcasses to fuel thermal power plants. While some may view this idea as gruesome and inhumane, others praise the plan as an inventive way of solving two problems at once.
To this day, Sweden has used well over 6,000 rabbits annually to fuel its heating centers . The country contends that 100,000 tons of raw materials can create enough heat for 11,000 homes annually . That’s a lot of bunny power! The aim of the project is not only to control growing rabbit populations, which started by the release of a few household pets into a park, but also to prevent any threats of contamination posed by the massive amount of excrement to nearby residents. As a plus, the program also reduces landfill waste that would have resulted from population control measures !
But Sweden has gotten more heat from its bunny power than expected. People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) responded to Sweden’s actions in outrage, claiming gross mistreatment of the rabbits . Others question the overall productivity of the bunny burning, taking into account the energy used for bullets, gunpowder, freezing preparation, and transportation before the fuel even makes it to the boiler.
But Sweden appears happy with the ‘success’ of the program and intends to continue; the country has even expanded its animal biofuel plant fuel mix to include dead cats, cows, deer, horses, and slaughterhouse waste products . The future of Sweden’s biofuel initiative looks optimistic, especially given the prolific nature of its fuel!