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Efforts to suck coal from the air must be ramped up

The nation needs to ramp up efforts to suck heat-exchanging gases out of the air to fight climate change, says…

The nation needs to ramp up efforts to suck heat-exchanging gases out of the air to fight climate change, says a new US report.

The report on Wednesday from the National Academy of Sciences says that the technology for doing so has improved and climate change is deteriorating. By the middle of the century, the world must remove about 10 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide out of the air each year. This corresponds to about twice the annual emissions from the United States

Last year, the world put almost 37 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide into the air and emissions have risen.

Steve Pacala, biologist and professor of the Princeton University panel said in an interview that ways of removing heat-separating gases from the atmosphere could make the job work to cope with climate change “much easier”.

“It makes you think differently about the climate problem when you have a backstop,” he said. “And the ultimate temperature we must suffer through will be lower.”

The report is on the heels of a UN science report that painted a gloomy picture of the world’s ability to avoid dangerous warming. Wednesday’s study “is kind of more optimistic, it provides some operational advice,” said Kate Gordon, a research scientist at the Columbia Center for Global Energy Policy, which was not part of the report’s panel.

The 370-page report required the nation to invest in technicians and methods that would remove the heat-separating gases such as carbon dioxide from the atmosphere generated by human activities such as combustion of coal and natural gas for electricity, or combustion of gasoline and diesel for transport. The technology outlined includes the simple and the futuristic:

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1; Plant more trees and manage the forests better and limit the amount of land used by humans. Plants take carbon dioxide from the air and use it to grow.

– Save the soil better so that they can store more carbon dioxide and produce more food.

– Preserve and restore coastal plants, such as marshland and seaweed beds. 19659003] – A relatively new technology known as direct flight g. Pilot project has begun to use giant fans entering the air, using a chemical reaction to extract carbon and then inject it underground.

– A still processed technique based on certain types of rocks that can absorb carbon dioxide.

– Burn more biofuel-like woods – and capture the carbon dioxide after combustion and either bury it underground or make it into solid material that can spread on dirt.

“These technologies will clearly help because we’ve screwed up a lot,” says Nobel Prize-winning atmosphere champion Mario Molina at the University of California San Diego, which was not part of the report’s panel.

The good news is that the technology in this field has advanced more in the last nine months than was held in the previous decade, study writer Christopher Jones, an engineering professor in Georgia Tech said.

Pacala said that the natural methods of tree planting are quite cheap and available now. But he said they can only do so much because “there is a limit on available land”.

Jason Furtado, a meteorology professor at the University of Oklahoma, who did not participate in the report, called the bioenergy method the most promising, but not necessarily the easiest.

The direct air capture, used by Climeworks, Carbon Engineering and others, is mostly limited by the cost, Pacala said.

Cold Technology as Chief Executive Researcher David Keith, a Professor at Harvard University To remove carbon from the air is only meaningful when people have stopped putting so much in the air. “The idea that humanity can carry large fossil emissions while being balanced with removal is nutty-you connect the leaks before the boat.”

The report addresses concern that it creates a hope of “moral risk” about the promise of these carbon dioxide removal technologies that could give civilization an excuse not to reduce carbon, oil and gas emissions now. Pacala said that CO2-removal technologies do not replace massive carbon dioxide emissions. They are tools to get the overall emissions, “he says.

“The fact that we need big negative emissions largely tells us that we have left it too late to solve the problem,” said Norwegian researcher Glen Peters, who traces global carbon dioxide emissions.


Explore further:
Why can not we change climate change with “negative emissions” technicians

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