PublicationJournal Article Removing harmful greenhouse gases from the air using energy from plants

September 24, 2015
Publication Type:
Journal Article

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Car­bon diox­ide (writ­ten as CO2) releases from fos­sil fuels cause cli­mate change, a warm­ing of the earth that causes more intense heat waves, extreme weather, and other neg­a­tive impacts on our world. How can we stop future cli­mate change? One option is to remove CO2 from the air around us. Here, we describe an orig­i­nal car­bon diox­ide removal tech­nol­ogy called bioen­ergy with car­bon cap­ture and seques­tra­tion (BECCS). BECCS pro­duces energy from plants, grasses, or trees while remov­ing CO2 from our atmos­phere. Sci­en­tists are just begin­ning to under­stand the role that BECCS can play in reduc­ing cli­mate change. We describe recent research that shows how the world might build elec­tric­ity sys­tems – a net­work that deliv­ers elec­tric­ity to your home – that remove, rather than release, CO2. These sys­tems are very dif­fer­ent from our cur­rent elec­tric­ity sys­tems, which use large amounts of fos­sil fuels.


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