[Digestion] Some calculations for South India and Skeletons tumbling out

Hoysall Chanakya chanakya at astra.iisc.ernet.in
Sun Nov 11 21:31:32 PST 2012

Dear Kyle and David,
Thanks David for more clarifications.  The more you look into this
cupboard, more the skeletons fall out.  I was hoping to simplify the
calculations for Kyle.  I strongly agree it is important to know why one
would like to carry out these estimates.  Else the tussle between a
researcher's conscience and simpleton "followers" convenience is immense. 
Especially if you attempt to dig into the assumptions behind these

I was involved at the early stages of country level estimates in the late
nineties and could not accept these generalizations as a researcher and
therefore moved out.  For example few non-woody or partially woody
agro-residues herbaceous biomass have about 32-35% as C.  For that matter
even most fuel wood species under normal usage conditions of 10-15%
moisture do not cross 40% C.  Yet, convention is to assume 50%C in
biomass.  An even greater conflict with me was the methane emission from
an average rural Indian cow which is assumed to be 50kg per annum.  With
this assumption, One could calculate to show that such a pasture grazed
rural Indian cow /bullock (120-150kg) that barely consumes 3kg dry matter
(avg/d) sends /belches out 300L biogas a day.  Skeletons indeed tumble
out.  Yet as David has put it these numbers are convenient when you are
not a researcher and want to give a modest /humble estimate of emissions
Best wishes

Dr. Hoysall Chanakya
Centre for Sustainable Technologies
(Assoc. Faculty at Centre for Infrastructure, Sustainable Transport and
Urban Planning (CiSTUP) and Centre for Contemporary Studies)
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012
ph 91-80-2293 3046; fax-91 80 2360 0683

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.

More information about the Digestion mailing list