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Tagged : earth-institute

Technologies to pull carbon from the air should be pursued, despite costs, say Columbia U scientists

July 26th, 2012

Columbia University scientists say that technologies to extract carbon dioxide from the air will likely become a critical part of any strategy to stabilize the global climate and should not be abandoned because of high costs. Writing in the Proceedings…

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Prospecting for carbon solutions

March 16th, 2009

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

Scientists have been studying a certain type of rock as a potential way to soak up carbon emissions. These ultramafic rocks, found in the United States, the Middle East and other locations, naturally react with carbon dioxide over thousands of years, turning the gas into solid minerals.

Geologists are exploring ways to exploit this natural tendency of the rock, and hurry it up a bit to help clean our carbon-addled atmosphere. The researchers include Columbia University graduate student Sam Krevor (and colleagues) who recently mapped the ultramafic rocks in the United States for his doctoral dissertation. The map shows a bounty of rock that they say could be enough to stash more than 500 years of U.S. CO2 production. That’s carbon scrubbing on an unheard-of scale.

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Columbia University scientists probe a stone age solution for global warming

March 9th, 2009

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

As inventors of all varieties race to develop the magic eco-fuel, the best ion battery or the most effective solar collection system, geologists are quietly exploring how certain types of rocks absorb our human carbon emissions.

The phenomenon is not unique. Trees and plants absorb some carbon. The ocean absorbs carbon. But trees can only do so much, and when they die, they release the carbon back into the atmosphere. The ocean has limits as well; it is already becoming acidic as gobbles our thickening stream of pollution.

Rocks, though, can capture carbon and render it into a solid, where it is virtually inert.

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