The major culprit of a harmful greenhouse gas also happens to be one of the most docile creatures in nature.
Cows — specifically their belches and manure — are a main source of methane, a gas that’s even more effective than carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the earth’s atmosphere.
The animals develop methane in their gut, “when their microbiome goes out of tune,” said Yuval Pearl, head of environmental policy at Metha.ai. At the same time, milk and meat yields decrease, hurting farmers.
“It's not even a problem that we can't understand and see with our eyes,” said Pearl during the 2022 MIT Sustainability Conference. “However, we do have the solutions for it.”
Metha.ai is using artificial intelligence to determine what tailored dietary supplement plan a cow herd needs for good gut health. It was one of eight startups featured during the conference looking for investment in their clean innovations.
Here’s a closer look at the seven other startups, and their solutions for a cleaner planet.
Amogy is developing a way to use emission-free, high-performance ammonia as fuel in transportation systems.
c16 Biosciences is developing sustainable alternatives to palm oil, which is responsible for deforestation and the related displacement of native species and people.
Electrified Thermal Solutions is developing a thermal battery that uses renewable electricity to produce high-temperature heat for industrial processes.
Infinite Cooling’s technology reduces freshwater usage by recovering water from the exhaust of industrial power plant cooling towers.
RRTC uses low-temperature solidification techniques to create alternatives for wood and ceramics.
Sourcemap is a platform that helps businesses map and monitor their end-to-end supply chains.
VEIR is developing a cooling system for long-distance renewable energy power lines.