Electricity from biomass with carbon capture could make western U.S. carbon-negativehttp://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2015/02/09/electricity-from-biomass-with-carbon-capture-could-make-western-u-s-carbon-negative/
By Robert Sanders, Media Relations | February 9, 2015
[font size=3]BERKELEY Generating electricity from biomass, such as urban waste and sustainably-sourced forest and crop residues, is one strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, because it is carbon-neutral: it produces as much carbon as the plants suck out of the atmosphere.
A new UC Berkeley study shows that if biomass electricity production is combined with carbon capture and sequestration in the western United States, power generators could actually store more carbon than they emit and make a critical contribution to an overall zero-carbon future by the second half of the 21st century.
By capturing carbon from burning biomass termed bioenergy with carbon capture and sequestration (BECCS) power generators could become carbon-negative even while retaining gas- or coal-burning plants with carbon capture technology. The carbon reduction might even offset the emissions from fossil fuel used in transportation, said study leader Daniel Sanchez, a graduate student in UC Berkeleys Energy and Resources Group.
There are a lot of commercial uncertainties about carbon capture and sequestration technologies, Sanchez admitted. Nevertheless, were taking this technology and showing that in the Western United States 35 years from now, BECCS doesnt merely let you reduce emissions by 80 percent the current 2050 goal in California but gets the power system to negative carbon emissions: you store more carbon than you create.
> There are a lot of commercial uncertainties about carbon capture and sequestration technologies,
> if biomass electricity production is combined with carbon capture and sequestration in the western
> United States, power generators could actually store more carbon than they emit
> The carbon reduction might even offset the emissions from fossil fuel used in transportation
> burning biomass as part of BECCS may have a greater impact on greenhouse gas emissions
> than using these same feedstocks for biofuels, solely because of the possibility of carbon capture.
> Were evaluating a technology with some uncertainty behind it, but we are saying that if the technology exists, ..."
i.e., "Fluffy unicorns farting rainbows would be really good for us all (if only they existed)."
Even the photo is being dishonest: "a carbon dioxide injection well in Australia" that is used to extract
more fossil fuels to be burnt.
"CCS" is just one big scam.
We need to do something that produces not just lower emissions, even carbon-neutral technology is not sufficient. We need negative emissions.
... and for ways to continue justifying the exact same behaviour that has got us into this fix.
Solar power is better than carbon neutral.
Wind power is better than carbon neutral.
The extraction & consumption (whether burned or converted) of fossil fuel resources
is never carbon neutral.
The use of "biofuel" can be better than carbon neutral but it can also be much worse
(e.g., when it destroys the environment "in order to save it" .
"Forest residue" is not waste. It is currently used to continue the natural cycle.
Extracting it for combustion - even with "most" CO2 being captured (then lost) - is not
helping the environment as not only does it degrade the source region's carbon cycle,
it is providing fuel that would otherwise not be available ... i.e., supporting "growth" and
"profit" a.k.a. "Business As Usual".
"Field residue" is not waste. It contains nutrients to replenish the soil and continue the
ability for the land to support further crops without demanding artificial fertilisers (which
consume resources - fossil fuels - and generate CO2, destroying the environment field by field).
Extracting it for combustion - even with the figleaf of hypothetical "CCS" - supports nothing
other than "Business As Usual".
> We need to do something that produces not just lower emissions, even carbon-neutral
> technology is not sufficient. We need negative emissions.
We need to stop emissions from fossil fuels, not just push them behind a curtain of bullshit.
We need to accept that our current choices are not sustainable - even in the short term - and change them.
We need to stop destroying the environment in order to continue our lust for the myth of "profit".
Last edited Wed Feb 11, 2015, 09:41 AM - Edit history (1)
How do you figure?
While I enthusiastically support the use of solar power at best it is carbon neutral. Using solar power may decrease carbon emission rates, however it will do nothing to decrease the amount of greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere.
Time to harvest us some "forest residue":
FYI, there is no such thing as "sustainably sourced forest and crop residues" today. Unless someone wants to suggest a way to replace the vital nutrients and humus such activities would deprive the land of, the suggestion is DOA. We've seen over and over again through the course of human civilization where people over-estimated how much they could take from the land, only to see the land fail them as it dried up and turned to rocky sand and soil. The only thing keeping our modern farms alive today is gobs of synthetic fertilizers, which are decidedly unsustainable.
I'm getting a little sick of people suggesting we short-circuit ANOTHER natural cycle to fix the natural cycles we've already fucked up.