Carbon Removal Research – Opportunities for Action

Over the last 18 months, major academic organisations from the IPCC to the National Academy of Sciences have begun to recognise the potential importance of removing carbon from the atmosphere in addition to the main event of reducing emissions to tackle climate change.

Further reading of this blog see below:

http://www.virginearth.com/2015/06/carbon-removal-research-opportunities-for-action/

More in detail we read:

“Carbon’s tendency to bond with other materials includes interactions with rocks. In fact, this is part of the Earth’s natural weathering processes, the main way that Nature rebalances carbon dioxide levels over time spans of millions of years. By efficiently grinding up the most carbon-hungry rocks and spreading them over soils, it’s possible to greatly accelerate this natural process to permanently lock up carbon directly from the atmosphere.

While the basic principle is proven, and lab trials are promising, there is still a lot we don’t understand about what affects the rates of reaction in the field. Adding the minerals to real-world natural systems involves all kinds of complex chemical and biological interactions and feedbacks that can either accelerate or hinder the reaction, and could also bring environmental risks. Caution is also required in choosing the right minerals; impurities in these carbon hungry rocks could potentially lead to contamination of the environments they’re added to. Lastly, it can be difficult to accurately keep track of just how much carbon you have captured, as the reaction can take many years. Fortunately there is work being done to find ways of overcoming these concerns and making this a viable approach. One of the leaders in this field is our finalist…”