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Carbon Dioxide Removal

Context:

According to the Emissions Gap report, delaying greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction will further increase the future dependence on carbon dioxide removal (CDR) from the atmosphere.

Relevance:

GS III: Environment and Ecology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR)
  2. Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) Methods: A Comprehensive Overview

Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR)

  • Scope: Encompasses technologies, practices, and deliberate human interventions aimed at extracting carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Significance:
  • Climate Mitigation: Essential component of climate change mitigation efforts, contributing to the reduction of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere.
  • Global Impact: Holds promise in addressing the escalating climate crisis by actively mitigating anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions.

Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) Methods: A Comprehensive Overview

Biochar:
  • Production Process: Generated through the controlled burning (pyrolysis) of organic waste from agricultural and forest sources.
  • Distinctive Features: Resembles charcoal but is a stable carbon form, minimizing atmospheric escape.
  • Carbon Storage: Provides a safe method for storing carbon, reducing contamination during production.
Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS):
  • Process: Involves bioenergy production through combustion, with subsequent capture and storage of resulting CO2 emissions.
  • Objective: Prevents combustion emissions from contributing to the greenhouse effect.
  • Sequestration: Captures and stores photosynthetically fixed carbon post-combustion.
Direct Air Carbon Capture and Storage (DACCS):
  • Extraction: Directly captures CO2 from the atmosphere at any location.
  • Storage: Permanently stores captured CO2 in deep geological formations or repurposes it for other applications.
  • Technology: Uses electricity to remove CO2 from the air.
Enhanced Rock Weathering:
  • Process: Involves pulverizing silicate rocks to accelerate the typically slow weathering action.
  • Product: Yields a powdered form with increased reactive surface area, applied to agricultural lands for chemical reactions.
Ocean Alkalinity Enhancement:
  • Approach: Includes adding alkaline substances to seawater to expedite the natural sink process.
  • Objective: Accelerates the absorption of CO2 by seawater, enhancing the overall carbon removal.
Significance:
  • Diverse Strategies: Showcases a range of methods from pyrolysis to ocean alkalinity enhancement for deliberate carbon removal.
  • Technological Advancements: Reflects advancements in technology, offering solutions at various scales to address carbon emissions.
Overall Impact:
  • Holistic Approach: Represents a comprehensive toolkit for carbon dioxide removal, contributing to climate change mitigation efforts globally.

-Source: The Hindu


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