<p>Finding himself with "money to burn," a worker feeds a furnace with some $40,000 (U.S.) worth of Hungarian currency. The old, worn bills have been retired from circulation, shredded, and pressed into briquettes for use as fuel. The Foundation to Help Autism in Miskolc, pictured here, and other charities are able to cover as much as one-third of their annual heating costs through the free government program.</p><p><em>—Brian Handwerk</em></p><p><em> </em></p><p><em></em><em>This story is part of a </em><a href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/energy" target="_blank"><em>special series</em></a><em> that explores energy issues. For more, visit <a href="http://www.greatenergychallenge.com/" target="_blank">The Great Energy Challenge</a></em>.</p><p><em> </em></p>

Feeding the Fire

Finding himself with "money to burn," a worker feeds a furnace with some $40,000 (U.S.) worth of Hungarian currency. The old, worn bills have been retired from circulation, shredded, and pressed into briquettes for use as fuel. The Foundation to Help Autism in Miskolc, pictured here, and other charities are able to cover as much as one-third of their annual heating costs through the free government program.

—Brian Handwerk

This story is part of a special series that explores energy issues. For more, visit The Great Energy Challenge.

Photograph by Laszlo Balogh, Reuters

Pictures: In Hungary, Burning Money for Fuel—Literally

Hungary is the only country to recycle its worn cash for fuel, recycling forints worth $1 billion (U.S.) each year into briquettes distributed to the poor.

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