Sunday, September 19 2010 @ 10:05 AM PDT
Contributed by: Richard Pitt
If burning oil and coal are the cause of global warming through the release of all that stored carbon, why don't we just start the process of making more oil and coal to capture the same amount and start the cycle all over again?
OK - it might take a few million years to reproduce the oil and coal we'll run out of some time in the next century or so, but who are we to not at least try to give our great^5000 grand children the opportunity in the future to start the cycle all over again?
All it takes is to simply start piling up carbon-bearing plant products and left-over carbon-carrying goods such as newspaper and cardboard.
Farmers would no longer plow under the stalks of the corn they've harvested - but instead simply push it off into a pile and keep adding to the pile over the years. No need to cover it with dirt or anything else for that matter. Over time the weight of the new stuff, along with the lack of oxygen in the pile, will cause the chemical reactions to turn it all into oil or coal, depending on how high the pile is. There are no other environmental impacts - and the carbon is taken out of the cycle completely.
Add some newspaper and cardboard too. Why expend the extra energy to gather and recycle this stuff when making new is easier? Maybe my brother and all the others at the pulp mill in Port Alberni would have long-term jobs again too!
Anyway, the article that started this though process is in the Washington Post. It talks about the millions that one power plant is expending to capture just 1.5% of the carbon it emits and pump it down into a sandstone formation a couple of thousand meters underground, and the fact that simply piling up the plant waste from 12,000 acres of farm land and leaving it to eventually turn to coal would cost less and be every bit as effective.
Think about it!
I'm going to start a garbage pile in my backyard as my contribution to lessening global warming. The recycling trucks won't get another piece of paper, and my grass clippings are going in there too.
Hmmm... wait - back of the envelope calculations show that the pile would have to be several times the size of my house to really keep the oxygen out. Well, maybe I'll just petition the local council to start the process out on one of the fields that are around here.