Scientists to Begin Potential Global Warming Fix

Published by: Antlers on 30th Aug 2011 | View all blogs by Antlers
Scientists to Begin Potential Global Warming Fix

A group of international scientists is preparing to launch a new experiment in September to see if they can slow down the amount of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere.  As CO2 is the primary greenhouse gas blamed for global warming, the scientists hope to slow down climate change by transforming it through a chemical reaction into limestone.

Dubbed “CarbFix”, the experiment entails pumping carbonated water into a deep hole on the steaming edge of a volcano in Iceland.  As the scientists explain, 90 percent of Iceland has a thick layer of basalt rock just under the surface,  This basalt rock is a highly reactive material that when exposed to carbon dioxide creates limestone, eliminating the CO2 in the process.

The scientists caution that quick results shouldn't be expected with the experiment.  Scheduled to last 6 to 12 months, the experiment likely won't lead to any long term benefits or solutions for several years, if at all.  One of the first experiment's primary objectives, in fact, is to train scientists for work that will be conducted for years to come.

Columbia University's Wallace S. Broeker, a scientific overseer of the project and interestingly, the man credited with coining the phrase “global warming” some forty years ago, says that the world's indifference to climate change has driven scientists to drastic measures.  “Whether we do it in the next 50 years, or the 50 years after that, we're going to have to store carbon dioxide,” the scientist said.

There are ongoing efforts to store away carbon dioxide already.  For example, natural gas production engineers in Norway are funneling CO2 into a sandstone reservoir under the North Sea.  But environmentalist worry that gas trapped away beneath rock or soil could someday escape, whereas CO2 converted into limestone could not.

Antlers

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