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ZooShare hopes to turn zoo manure into electricity for Ontario

An upstart energy company is hoping to capture the power of zoo poo in order to generate electricity.

ZooShare has raised over $2.2 million from about 300 local investors to construct what it calls North America’s first “zoo-based biogas plant.”

The idea is that the plant could harness the power of manure produced at the zoo and turn it into power that could be sold to the province.

The company raised the cash by selling “community bonds” with a guaranteed interest rate of seven per cent over seven years.

Around 3,000 tonnes of of zoo manure and 14,000 tonnes of inedible grocery store waste each year would be turned into renewable energy and fertilizer.

The biogas plant would be built on existing compost grounds east of the zoo.

Ontario’s Ministry of Environment is looking into the application for approval, which has been posted for public review and consultation.

The Toronto Sun reports that once the facility is in action, the zoo could receive either $50,000 a year or 10 per cent of the profits.

In 2013, The Canadian Press reported that the idea for the manure-to-electricity conservation plant came from the Toronto Zoo itself, which searched for compatible projects for years.