Bill Gates Invests in Start-up Trying to Cut Methane Emissions in Cows
Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates is a passionate advocate for a greener world and has ploughed vast amounts of money into achieving his dream.
Bill Gates has invested in Rumin8, an Australian climate technology start-up, that aims to shake up the methane-emitting animal agriculture industry.
The start-up is developing a lab-grown feed additive that should make cows create less gas, thereby lowering methane emissions.
powerhouse Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV) - led by Gates - has invested $17.2Mln in a Phase Two funding round.
“Our laboratory results continue to yield excellent results, our animal trials are reflecting the laboratory results, and the financial modelling we are undertaking is indicating we will be able to supply our products at a commercial price,” Rumin8 co-founder and chief executive David Messina said.
Rumin8’s is the first Australian company in which BEV has invested. Methane is a greenhouse gas emitted by ruminants and is 28 times more plentiful than carbon dioxide, another greenhouse gas.
Investors in the start-up include Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Alibaba Group Holding’s Jack Ma and former New York Mayor and businessman Michael Bloomberg.
On average, one cow emits 20 grams of methane per kilogram of dry matter in the feed. If recalibrated to the equivalent greenhouse effect, that is 560 grams of carbon dioxide. The reason for methane production lies in the digestive peculiarities of ruminants. Animals emit a lot of methane when burping and releasing digestive gas.