back to article New road made from pigsh*t in Missouri

Planet-friendly pigfarm barons in Missouri have come up with a brilliant new plan for disposing of their porcine portfolios' pungent poo output. They have developed a process which turns pigshit into road tarmac. The St Louis Post-Dispatch has the story, describing pigmuck tech kingpin Kent Schien's 10-year quest to quell the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    More alliteration?

    Hard to imagine it's possible I know, but after careful analysis I reckon you could squeeze a little more alliteration into the piece by altering the second line from "porcine portfolios' pungent poo output" to "porcine portfolios' pungent poo production"

    Just my tuppence worth....

    Keep up the good work :-)

  2. Real Ale is Best
    IT Angle


    Seems a bit of a waste of organic material to me.

    What's wrong with brewing it for methane, then using the rest as good organic fertiliser? I bet that would consume a lot less energy...

  3. SW


    Quote...Missouri state engineers will now monitor the pigshit pavement for durability, skidmarks etc

    Skidmarks - chortle - you owe me a new keyboard and screen

  4. scottboy


    Fnarr. And fnarr again.

  5. Code Monkey


    "Missouri state engineers will now monitor the pigshit pavement for durability, skidmarks etc in coming months."

    Very good!

  6. Pirate Dave


    would this be considered "assphalt"?

  7. Senor Beavis


    "skidmarks" - made me giggle like a child again

  8. RayG

    This and global warming won't get along

    And when there's a tarmac-meltingly hot summer?

  9. Anonymous Coward

    great logic

    The planet's screwed because we've been burning oil, let's make some more - making sure we use huge amounts of energy to produce it..

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      What you mean is ...

      ... "*In my opinion*, the planet's screwed because we've been burning oil". Please, be careful when spouting opinion as fact - the planet is far from "screwed", and things like this may help the continued production of plastics until other sources come on-line.

  10. BlueGreen

    Quality stuff

    Possibly the most linguistically decorative of Lewis's yet.

    And skidmarks, good god...

  11. Stone Fox

    a new record for joke density I think

    And an excellent story, good work sir.

    (oh, and I'm betting you'll probably set the record from most keyboard icons in the comments as well)

  12. james 68

    another use

    if it really is like the heavier fractions of oil then one use would be fueling large ships

    marine deisel is very (very) thick, almost like tar - in fact a lot like tar as it can easily become a solid and must be heated to 'thin' it slightly for pumping to the engines

    theres a huge market for that if it burns well enough

    1. TomCat1346

      Wouldn't want to be...

      ...downwind of a ship burning that stuff, though!

  13. TheRobster
    Black Helicopters

    Further uses...

    I really hope this does not extent to building / maintaining airport runways, else the Pope is in real trouble.

    Or does the new one not do the kissing the ground but when he gets off a plane?

    Black-opter due to the lack of Pope-plane icon.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      and people of many religions won't...

      be able to use roads or fuel this is made of. Interesting times.

      I like the idea above about using less energy to turn it into methane and fertilizer. Wouldn't it be even more efficient to use it strictly as fertilizer?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Thumb Down

        The smell of Pig shit...

        I once had to drive across Iowa in October while the farmers were spreading pigshit after they'd finished harvest. The recycled air conditioning couldn't get rid of the smell. What a godawful stink! I felt for the guys with the tankers out there spraying the crap. I can't imagine what it smells like heated up.

        You made me laugh about the religious aspect of this. Is pigshit kosher?

        Not to mention what would happen if a small municipality decided to use this on their local streets. The smell would drive the residents to revolt. If it was as bad on a 6-hour trek across I-80 in Iowa ( I couldn't even smell my own farts), no ones going to put up with it for a day or two in a residential area.

  14. Uk_Gadget

    Slow on the uptake....

    .... They've been using that here for years, all our roads are crap...

  15. ElReg!comments!Pierre

    fairly logical use

    as most existing roads in Missouri are shit already.

  16. Elmer Phud

    Missed one

    "Once allowed to cool and harden, however, the chocolate highway is apparently no smellier than any other stretch of asphalt. Innoventor and the Missouri state engineers will now monitor the pigshit pavement for durability, skidmarks etc in coming months" ---- once the cars are bacon the road again.

  17. SMFSubtlety

    porcine portfolios

    porcine portfolios.... is that a Porkfolio?

    I'll get my coat!

  18. jai

    where's Tina Turner when you need her?

    [the Blaster has reduced Missouri's power supply]

    Auntie Entity: For God's sake, what now?

    The Master: Who run Missouri?

    Auntie Entity: Dammit, I told you, no more embargos.

    The Master: More, Blaster.

    [the Blaster puts all power out]

    The Master: Who run Missouri ? Who... run... Missouri ?

    Auntie Entity: ...You know who.

    The Master: Say.

    Auntie Entity: Master Blaster.

    The Master: Say loud!

    [the Master turns on the town loudspeakers]

    Auntie Entity: Master Blaster.

    The Master: Master Blaster... what?

    Auntie Entity: Master Blaster runs Missouri.

    The Master: Louder!

    Auntie Entity: Master Blaster runs Missouri!

    The Master: Lift embargo.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    Nice to see that they are doing the male thing and monitoring for poo skid marks. Wonder what the criteria are, 1 underpants crotch full on a single wipe and it fails?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Brilliantly written. I think that was the first "Oh, Orgasmic" I've given.

  21. kain preacher


    this is one shity road

  22. Chris Miller

    Hannibal, Missouri

    Famous as the small town where Samuel Langhorne Clemens (aka Mark Twain) grew up, and later served as the inspiration for the fictional town of St. Petersburg in "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn".

  23. Alan B

    Religious implications?

    This means that members of religions that forbid any association with pigs will not be travelling on/living near any roads surfaced with this stuff. I foresee problems on the horizon.

  24. Martin 19

    And I thought the roads were shit here...

    Would this class as a 'pork barrel' project?

  25. Anonymous Coward

    Pig poo is the worst

    If you've never smelt it, it's just the worst. Cows, horses, chickens...nothing comes within a nose-hair of smelling that bad.

    Pity the first poor biker to lay one down and do a face plant on it...

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Come to Missouri

    where the streets are paved with......... Forget it , stay where you are.

  27. Tom 12

    Ironic isn't it?

    In the US they are making roads out of shit, while here in the UK our roads are turning to shit all on their own.

  28. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Energy balence anyone?

    I can't help thinking that it must take quite a lot of energy to turn pig poo into semi-oil.

    Obviously good catalyst selection should help a lot but how far can you go?

    Does it take less energy to turn pig-poo into asphalt than oil in asphalt. I don't know.

    Bet it's close though.

  29. JasonW

    So the road is laid...

    ... and the jobby's a good 'un

  30. Mike Echo

    Lewis, O Lewis

    Once I saw Lewis' name on the byline I luckily knew what I was in for. Do you El Reg hacks actually fight over who gets to write about a story with such potential as this? I can see the El Reg news room now - "It's my story!". "No it's not, I saw it first!", "Bugger off!", etc.

  31. Nexox Enigma


    To make it really good, they should provide the heat by burning some of the heavy oil they produce. As long as one unit of heavy oil doesn't take more energy to convert from shit than it contains, then you'd have a sustainable process, assuming you have an infinite supply of shit, which seems not far from the truth here. Assuming you use the heat directly instead of throwing 60% of it away on a heat engine and generator, this sounds possible.

    If, on the other hand, it takes more energy to make a unit of oil than said unit of oil contains, then this whole process is probably not worth much more than the cost of disposal of pig shit in other ways.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Regular asphalt doesn't smell so great either while hot, so this stuff may not be any worse.

  33. Christopher E. Stith

    only about 20 miles from Quincy, IL, that made Slashdot headlines today

    <a href="">Databases in Caves? A Unique Google Fiber Bid</a>

    It's unusual for either place to make much news until spring flooding gets drastic. It's quite a coincidence.

  34. Andy Livingstone

    Whereas in the UK....

    We simply leave our roads to deteriorate to that.

    P.S. I love the Show-Me state.

  35. Uncle_Gweilo
    Big Brother

    Additional use.

    Smarter to put the poop through a digester to extract the methane gas to use as a fuel and THEN make road material.

  36. chris 130

    Re-pave the streets of westminster with the stuff


    its necessary and entirely appropriate

  37. The_Police!


    is there an app for that?

    Mines the one with the holes.

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