Updates‎ > ‎

2016-11-18. They may save us yet: Scientists found a way to turn our carbon emissions into rock.

posted Nov 30, 2016, 1:28 PM by Alan Gould

By Chris Mooney, The New York Times. For GSS Climate Change chapter 10. Excerpt: Earlier this year, a project in Iceland reported an apparent breakthrough in the safe underground storage of the principal greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide — an option likely to be necessary if we’re to solve our global warming problem. The Carbfix project, run by a leading Icelandic producer of geothermal power, Reykjavik Energy, announced that it had successfully injected 250 tons of carbon dioxide, dissolved in water, into an underground repository of volcanic rocks called basalts — and that the carbon carbon dioxide ...had apparently become one with the basalt, undergoing a fast chemical reaction and forming a type of rock called a carbonate in two years’ time. ...And now, a group of American researchers has taken the science even farther.... Peter McGrail of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, a branch of the Department of Energy, and his colleagues were also working on storing carbon dioxide ...an actual injection, in this case 1253 meters deep into basalts from the Columbia River region of Washington State. In their results reported Friday in the journal Environmental Science & Technology Letters, ...after two years had passed, they took core samples of the rocks, using a battery of tests to prove definitively that the CO2 had indeed turned into a carbonate rock called ankerite, comprised of calcium, carbon, oxygen, iron, magnesium, and manganese. ...they looked at the ratio of two “isotopes,” or slight variants, of carbon to one another. ...showing a signature that matched up with the fossil fuel-based carbon dioxide that had originally been pumped into the earth. “There is no other possible explanation,” said McGrail. “The only way that those carbonates had formed, it had to come from the CO2 that we injected.”....  https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/11/18/they-may-save-us-yet-scientists-found-a-way-to-turn-our-carbon-emissions-into-rock/