Most countries in the world have committed themselves to reducing carbon dioxide emissions to slow global warming. What is not stressed enough is that reducing emissions will not be enough to reach the ambitious objectives of the agreement and that effective methods will also have to be found to remove the carbon dioxide already present in the air.
A Canadian start-up has developed a technology that is suitable for this purpose.
Up to now, there was a natural way to remove carbon dioxide from the air, also known to children: planting trees. However, although it is always a good and just thing, the rejection is confronted with the widespread tendency towards urbanization of the contemporary world and does not seem to be feasible as the only solution on a large scale.
For this reason, Dr. David Keith's Carbon Engineering has developed an experimental technology capable of extracting carbon dioxide from the air. A futuristic project but with solid foundations, so much so that even Bill Gates is among investors. Here's how it works.
The process is divided into four phases that take place in the plant built by Carbon Engineering. First of all the air is absorbed inside the machine by a wall of fans and is conveyed on a honeycomb plate. From here on, a complex chain of chemical reactions takes place, in which each phase collaterally produces a chemical solution that is used as the first reagent in a previous phase. The point of the system is to be as self-sufficient as possible to reduce costs and maximize effects.
Despite the complexity of the process, especially for non-professionals, the idea is more than twenty years old and was hypothesized by Klaus Lackner who in 1995 earned a mention on Discover Magazine in the investigation "Seven ideas that could change the world ". But only in 2015 the system was patented and implemented by David Keith.
For three years now, the Carbon Engineering plant extracts a ton of carbon dioxide per day from the atmosphere. For now, the costs of the plant are neither cheap nor burdensome, but it is estimated that they will be further reduced with the progressive development of the technology. Considering the specific weight of certain investors who rarely make a mistake, we are inclined to believe it.
Now we need to convince planetary leaders to implement the system on a large scale!