Excessive harvesting of trees for fuel can strip the land of its topsoil, leading to deforestation. Deforestation and global climate change complicate poverty issues. Sustainability is one of Heifer International's Cornerstones, and we work to incorporate its principles in all our projects. One way Heifer International is doing this is through the use of biogas. Biogas, a fuel source based on the methane from animal waste, offers a cheap, sustainable option.
A simple way to teach kids about alternative energy sources and sustainability is by making a bottle that shows how gas is made when materials decay.
- Raw meat
- Lettuce leaves or vegetables
- 2-liter soda bottle
- Rubber gloves
- Masking tape
First, put on the gloves and drop the raw meat and the vegetables into the bottle. Don't put too much in, just cover the bottom well. Don't touch the outside of the bottle while you do this. Next, wash your hands and dispose of the gloves. Then get two tablespoons of sand and pour it in the bottle, covering the contents.
Next, take two teaspoons of water and pour it in the bottle. Stretch the balloon over the bottle's neck. Secure it in place with a string and wrap masking tape over the string.
Place in a warm location. The balloon will inflate over the next three days because of the gas that is being created by decay. Throw the project away after use.