From: David Biello from Yale Environment360
Published September 22, 2014 11:39 AM

Carbon Capture Technology and Climate Action

Some scientists and analysts are touting carbon capture and storage as a necessary tool for avoiding catastrophic climate change. But critics of the technology regard it as simply another way of perpetuating a reliance on fossil fuels.

For more than 40 years, companies have been drilling for carbon dioxide in southwestern Colorado. Time and geology had conspired to trap an enormous bubble of CO2 that drillers tapped, and a pipeline was built to carry the greenhouse gas all the way to the oil fields of west Texas. When scoured with the CO2, these aged wells gush forth more oil, and much of the CO2 stays permanently trapped in its new home underneath Texas. 

 

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More recently, drillers have tapped the Jackson Dome, nearly three miles beneath Jackson, Mississippi, to get at a trapped pocket of CO2 for similThe Mississippi project uses emissions from burning a fossil fuel to help bring more fossil fuels out of the ground - a less than ideal solution to the problem of climate change. But enhanced oil recovery may prove an important step in making more widely available a technology that could be critical for combating climate change - CO2 capture and storage, or CCS.use. It's called enhanced oil recovery. And now there's a new source of CO2 coming online in Mississippi — a power plant that burns gasified coal in Kemper County, due to be churning out electricity and captured CO2 by 2015 and sending it via a 60-mile pipeline to oil fields in the southern part of the state. 

National Park in a bottle with a frog image via Shutterstock.

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