Semi OT: CO2 suckers

End-of-the-century scenarios involve removing CO2 from the air.

Direct air capture machines suck carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Are they part of the solution to climate change?…
On a barren lava plateau in Iceland stands an entirely new kind of industrial facility that sucks carbon dioxide from the air and traps it in stone. The world’s first commercial direct air capture (DAC) plant is designed to remove thousands of tonnes of greenhouse gas every year and then inject it deep underground. Technology like this has been mooted for years but faced huge engineering challenges and, until recently, was dismissed as a costly fantasy…

When Deanna D’Alessandro, a professor of chemistry at the University of Sydney, encountered the idea of mechanical carbon removal, she wondered if there wasn’t a simpler solution. A tree, of course, is a pre-existing and relatively cheap technology that sequesters CO2 in wood and other biomass. By her own calculations, using reforesting to capture Australia’s CO2 emissions for two years (about 1 billion tonnes), would require an area of land equivalent to the size of New South Wales [larger than Texas]…

The greatest challenge, says Professor D’Alessandro, is processing enough air to capture a significant amount of CO2, given the gas makes up just 0.04 per cent of the air we breathe. There are generally two approaches…



The problem is that CO2 is everywhere in small concentration. How do you suck and purify the whole atmosphere? Los Angeles never to anywhere on trying to think of ways to suck up all the smog and blowing it above the inversion layer or over the mountains. Sucking up CO2 from the atmosphere is gigantically out of reach.


From the OP article: “In short, the IPCC says, the world needs to both reduce future emissions and remove historical ones to reach a safe climate.”

Some sources have more concentrated CO2 output, and some of these will always be needed. Having somewhere to put this C02 would be useful. The OP article mentions some possibilities including synthetic fuel and plastics. Algae farms are another possibility (bubble the C02 through water). A carbon market needs a carbon price, and that can be set with a carbon tax. A carbon tax lets the market find the best solution, while industry subsidies let the government pick winners. lists some possible solutions. Most of the sinks involve food, agriculture, or trees.

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Ethanol Industry Banks On Carbon Capture To Slow Climate Change, But Researchers Have Doubts, June 23, 2021
“In a statement, Summit Carbon Solutions spokesman Jesse Harris said carbon capture cuts ethanol’s footprint in half. There are still carbon emissions associated with ethanol production due to corn production, energy used by ethanol plants, and transportation”…

Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks
sources 2019: Transportation 29%, Electricity 25%, Industry 23%, Commercial & Residential 13%, Agriculture 10%.…

                  SOLUTION                                            SECTOR(S)                          SCENARIO 1
             Reduced Food Waste                     Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            90.7
              Plant-Rich Diets                      Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks           65.01
        Tropical Forest Restoration                                   Land Sinks                           54.45
                Silvopasture                                          Land Sinks                           26.58
      Peatland Protection and Rewetting             Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks           26.03
    Tree Plantations (on Degraded Land)                               Land Sinks                           22.24
        Temperate Forest Restoration                                  Land Sinks                           19.42
              Managed Grazing                                         Land Sinks                           16.42
           Perennial Staple Crops                                     Land Sinks                           15.45
             Tree Intercropping                                       Land Sinks                           15.03
        Regenerative Annual Cropping                Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks           14.52
          Conservation Agriculture                  Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            13.4
       Abandoned Farmland Restoration                                 Land Sinks                           12.48
          Multistrata Agroforestry                                    Land Sinks                            11.3
          Improved Rice Production                  Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            9.44
      Indigenous Peoples’ Forest Tenure             Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            8.69
              Bamboo Production                                       Land Sinks                            8.27
              Forest Protection                     Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            5.52
        Perennial Biomass Production                                  Land Sinks                             4
            Grassland Protection                    Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            3.35
       System of Rice Intensification               Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            2.78
             Biochar Production                                   Engineered Sinks                          2.22
Sustainable Intensification for Smallholders        Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Land Sinks            1.36
         Coastal Wetland Protection           Food, Agriculture, and Land Use / Coastal and Ocean Sinks     0.99
                                                                        total                              449.65

Gigatons CO2 Equivalent Reduced / Sequestered (2020–2050) from
total of all solutions listed is 1001 Gigatons CO2eq.


Sucking up CO2 from the atmosphere is gigantically out of reach.

Currently it is. Who knows what technologies will be available in 20 or 40 years?

Anderson et al. note that most plans to meet Paris decarbonization targets depend upon negative emission technologies, carbon dioxide removal from the atmosphere. If one looks at the situation without these non-existent techniques, the authors estimate that an annual decarbonization rate of 10% per year is required.

Data show that since 2015, the year that the Paris Argeement was drafted and put forward, the rate of global decarbonization has decreased each year. This is bad news for climate policy. In fact in 2018, based on these data, global decarbonization (1.3%) was less than the 2000-2018 average rate of decarbonization (1.5%).

A factor of two: how the mitigation plans of ‘climate progressive’ nations fall far short of Paris-compliant pathways…


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