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WE COME TO BURY CARBON, NOT TO PRAISE IT

Globe and Mail Update: STEPHEN KAUFMAN - July 23, 2007

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070723.wwcomment23/EmailBNStory/Front/home

With the recent announcement that Canada has joined other G8 nations in a plan to cut greenhouse-gas emissions in half by 2050, it is time to act. Carbon capture and storage, endorsed by organizations as diverse as the World Wildlife Fund and the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, must be given priority as Canada considers its approach to the global issue of climate change.

Canada, as a significant emitter of carbon dioxide with world-leading potential for large-scale implementation of carbon capture and storage technology, can take an international leadership role in developing this solution. As Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said, Canada must demonstrate leadership when it comes to protecting and enhancing the environment -- not merely as an energy superpower, but a clean energy superpower.

capture and storage involves trapping carbon dioxide from industrial sources before it is emitted and storing it in deep geological formations. A coalition of 14 Canadian corporations -- Agrium, Air Products Canada, Canadian Natural Resources, ConocoPhillips, EPCOR, Husky Energy, Keyera, Imperial Oil, Nexen, Shell Canada, Sherritt International, Suncor Energy, Syncrude and TransAlta -- has already invested two years in exploring a major application of this technology.

proposed Integrated CO2 Network (ICO2N) can be built in phases and holds the potential of reducing carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 20 million tonnes a year -- the equivalent of taking four million vehicles off the road.

Successful implementation of the ICO2N concept at targeted sites in Western Canada -- where ideal conditions exist in the form of clusters of large carbon dioxide emitters in close proximity to prime geological injection and storage sites -- is just the beginning. Expansion of the ICO2N approach on a national scale would result in globally significant emission reductions.

leveraging the expertise that already exists here to develop the technologies, infrastructure and regulatory models necessary for the creation of a large-scale carbon capture and storage network, Canada would become a global leader in addressing climate change.

Industry is in agreement that carbon capture and storage must be considered in conjunction with other measures such as energy conservation and investments in renewable energy. But, as indicated by last year's report of the National Advisory Panel on Sustainable Energy Science and Technology and Canada's National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy, carbon capture and storage has the potential to be Canada's single largest carbon dioxide mitigation option.

The basic technology for carbon capture and storage is already proven and safe. The practice of injecting carbon dioxide into oil fields for enhanced oil recovery has been going on for more than three decades in the United States. Deep geological carbon capture and storage projects currently operating in Norway, Algeria and Saskatchewan are each eliminating about one million tonnes of emissions annually.

The Integrated CO2 Network would capture carbon dioxide from sources in north-central Alberta, including Fort McMurray, Fort Saskatchewan and the coal power plants near Wabamun Lake. The carbon dioxide would then be gathered and transported by pipeline to suitable geological sites elsewhere in Alberta. About 1,000 kilometres of main pipeline and 400 kilometres of small collector lines would be needed for this system, which could be built up over five to 10 years.

Although the initial ICO2N proposal focuses on Alberta, it is by no means a solution targeted only at reducing emissions from that province's industries. Greenhouse-gas reduction is a national issue, and the ICO2N approach can work anywhere where there are large carbon dioxide emitters and suitable geology. The initial advantage to using Alberta to model a carbon capture and storage solution is that a market already exists for the use of carbon dioxide in enhanced oil recovery, which will help offset the initial costs of developing the network. But far more carbon dioxide will be captured than can be used by industry.

Long-term carbon dioxide storage and monitoring will require the kind of visionary government policies and funding mechanisms required for other historic Canadian infrastructure projects such as the Canadian Pacific Railway and the trans-Canada pipeline system. In terms of its potential for transforming industrial activity, creating a national carbon capture and storage infrastructure could be no less significant.

As evidenced by its support for the ICO2N initiative, industry is prepared to step up and contribute its share to the substantial capital and operating costs of this infrastructure. For a long-term vision such as ICO2N to advance in a timely and effective manner, however, industry and government must work together in new and creative ways. A strong public-private partnership is needed.

In March, the federal government took a step forward with the announcement of its $1.5-billion fund aimed at supporting greenhouse-gas reduction projects, including carbon capture and storage. Together, Ottawa and the government of Alberta took another step in the right direction with the creation of the industry-led, joint ecoEnergy Carbon Capture and Storage Task Force.

Supported by a cross-section of industry and backed by authoritative engineering and economic analysis, ICO2N builds on more than two years of discussion with governments and is central to a made-in-Canada carbon capture and storage solution.

With expanding international endorsement of carbon capture and storage as a critical tool in the world's carbon dioxide reduction kit and our unique geological advantages, there should be no debate about whether Canada should move forward with a national carbon capture and storage program. The environmental and economic benefits are simply too important.

Stephen Kaufman is steering committee chair of the proposed Integrated CO2 Network. He has held a variety of positions in the Canadian energy industry since 1980 and, since 2003, has been renewable energy and business development director at Suncor Energy.

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WE COME TO BURY CARBON, NOT TO PRAISE IT - BLOG

STEPHEN KAUFMAN

Globe and Mail Update

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070723.wwcomment23/CommentStory/Front/home

Latest comment posted at 4:21 PM EDT 24/07/07

Dan Weaver from Canada writes:

The author leaves out the downsides to Carbon Capture and Storage, which are important to note. First it is of utmost importance to recognize that the language used by the author is critically misleading - no carbon dioxide is "eliminated", it is literally 'swept under the rug'. This mitigation strategy may well become necessarily employed, however attention must be paid to the reality of what is being proposed. We are pumping carbon dioxide into geological formations that are ideal for remaining isolated from the atmosphere. Ideally, perhaps, we could continue to bury our atmospheric waste indefinately, however the same groups the author mentions (most importantly the International Panel on Climate Change) detail numerous downsides cautioning about risks and costs of implementing CC&S, specifically found at http://arch.rivm.nl/env/int/ipcc/pages_media/SRCCS-final/IPCCSpecialReportonCarbondioxideCaptureandStorage.htm or simply linked through www.ipcc.ch, the United Nations site for climate change research. Notably, the storage in geological formations is not without risk of rupture and leaking and thus negation of its purpose. although this is supposed to be rare, if it does occur, the leak would pose a significant health risk to any nearby population. In addition, the IPCC CC&S report also mentions the risk of the pressure leading to geological activity being prompted by the pressure, also then risking escape of the gas. On the upside, injecting CO2 into emptied oil deposits allows for the extraction of much oil that would otherwise be wasted. I mention this as a genuine good deal and efficiency, rather than an oil-conspiracist. This is a big plus, but still, this method is a delay of the problem, and doesn't in any way solve the issue of what to ultimately do with the thousands of megatonnes of CO2 we would quickly inject into the geology of the Earth.

Dr Demento from Canada writes:

This is an excellent initiative that I fully endorse. Just as the nuclear industry spends a considerable percentage of its revenue on waste management for the benefit of Canadians and the environment, so must the fossil fuel industry.

Posted 23/07/07 at 11:17 PM EDT | Alert an Editor | Link to Comment

Felix von Geyer from Montréal, Canada writes: A surprising piece. Another leading member of ICON told me that first blush CCS capture- assuming the CCS pipeline is in place - could capture 70-100 megatonnes of CO2 "at first blush," somewhat more than the 20 megatonnes mentioned here. Using CO2 for enhanced oil recovery of conventional wells is not necessarily going to make for safe storage, albeit it makes a physical, saleable commodity out of CO2. If ConcoPhillips/Gary Lunn are so keen to pursue oil pipelines to the Gulf Coast and US in general, and have the regulatory approval system speeded up, perhaps they should aim to do the same with the CCS pipeline in Alberta. Aggressively, it could be done within 4 years from design, planning consent to construction. Unfortunately, the government's Turning the Corner/regulatory framework proposals are so weak that the maximum possible value of their technology fund would, I believe, yield $600 million in the first year, a sum unlikely to invest much into emissions reducing technologies. The CCS pipeline, estimated between $2.5-$5 billion should be implemented before any further issues are given for new oil sands developments. After all, the quintessential component of Corporate Social Responsibility is not to amass profits by externalizing costs onto society and the environment. If these costs were internalized onto a company's financial bottom line, would they be so attractive to investors? $15/tonne of emissions paid into a technology fund represents way under a dollar on the price of a barrel of crude so is it time for Canada to wake up and commit to becoming a carbon-constrained economy to truly incentivize companies to do the right thing, not duck out of their burdens. Finally, if the MacKenzie and Peace Rivers have 30% less water than in 1971, forecast to shrink similarly over the next few decades, we should remind ourselves: there are alternatives to oil; there are no alternatives to water. Felix von Geyer, sustainability journalist.

Dan Weaver from Canada writes:

Moreover, some argue for injection into the Ocean (of CO2). This is seriously discussed in academic literature and the UN IPCC CC&S report as a solution alongsde injection of CO2 into geological formations. This is deemed acceptable because one could inject the CO2 at such a depth that it would sit at the bottom of the ocean like a lake, containing it from the atmosphere. This is pointedly dangerous as it would invariably raise ocean pH and thus dramatically affect the global ecosystem. back to geostorage though: as the article mentions, this method of coping with our obligation to reduce anthropologic emission of greenhouse gases requires investment in large amounts of infrastructure because the sources of CO2 emission that can be caputured (ie energy from coal power plants, of which there are only a few in Ontario, and those are promised to be soon closed in favor of Hydro/Nuclear increases) are far (especially considering the wider global energy environment) from the available geological storage sites. This then requires: coal and industrial processes change to allow easy separation of CO2 and other gases produced, which can then be redirected into high pressure storage. Different caputure techniques are already used at coal power plants (though it is hardly widespread) and readily available. next one requires either tanker trucks or gas pipelines to transport the gas to the storage site. already there is such trouble negotiating for the Mackenzie pipeline or others that we in Canada would be best to use Trucks. as a motorist, I don't find myself comfortable with that. WIth all this infrastructural costs and possibilities for the entire process being wasted if a leak should occur, We need to ask serious questions about this to discern how deeply we should use Carbon Caputure & Storage. We will need it, but in my opinion, emphasis should be on solar and nuclear energy, efficiency and auto standards. nuclear is friendlier than CC&S!anotherday.

A Big Black Dog With Two Tails from Edmonton ex St. John's, Canada writes:

The thrust of this article, that Canada can be a leading player in CC&S is absolutely legitimate; the late '80s Montreal Protocol on atmospheric ozone depleters is the working proof . However current efforts by various Canadian organizations, including ICO2N (thats such a cute acronym) to develop a working CC&S plant are unco-ordinated and are moving along at a glacial pace. Don't hold your breath waiting for Canada's major GHG emitters and regulators to make the significant commitments that are required; any efforts to date are window dressing only.

John F. from Edmonton, Canada writes:

The author is either being paid by the oil companies or has a death wish. Either way, I am not impressed with the reasoning of his argument. Carbon capture and sequestration is seen in the oil business as a last-ditch effort to save their skin in the face of public pressure on global warming. Nobody in their right mind in the oil patch would ever even dream of such foolhardy a solution. If the envioronmentalists like it its because they need to be seen to in the game and pressuring the oil companies to do something, not that the solution makes any sense by itself. Let's look at this from a common sense perspective. How does the CO2 emitted balance out with the location for burial? Let's assume that the location is 200-300 kilometers away from the emission source. Let's also assume that there are over 50 sources in Canada alone. Building pipelines around the province of alberta and north america to connect these points won't match up with economic reality. The dialogue of CO2 pipleines is just a pipe dream that will be washed away by the creation of new energy tecnhnologies that are less poluting and have a lower CO2 footprint. We need to look the problem in the face and realize that there is nowhere to hide. Get on with the job of building the future, Mr. Harper, quit handing out money to polluting dinosaurs and give it to the startup renewable energy companies that will create a future for this planet.

Mark Orr from Toronto, Canada writes:

I have always wondered why the carbon has to be stored in the form of CO2. Such high pressures etc...why not just convert agricultural waste to inert carbon (like charcoal), pulverise it, and pump it under ground with water???

Rick Czarnota from Calgary, writes:

Dan Weaver the 'risks' of carbon capture that you site are common issues for every oil and gas project.

Everyone of the thousands of gas wells in Canada has a risk of rupture and leaking. That's why we put BOPs on the wellheads, and have probably the most stringent codes in the world regarding overpressure protection and material testing of our steel.

The ground isn't going to start randomly leaking CO2.

There would also be limited health risks that I can think of related to the release of CO2 from a well. Yes a lot of CO2 could be released before a leak or rupture was capped, but that amount would still be minute compared to the atmosphere.

You mention the 'risk' of geological activity being prompted by the pressure, also then risking escape of the gas.

If that were the case why aren't all of the current gas pools affecting geological activity? Carbon capture wells aren't under any higher pressure than gas wells; in fact the pressure would be less than some gas wells.

Hopefully Dion, May and Layton read the article; and focus on the sentence that mentions 5-10 years.

That is the actual timeline in which Canada will come close to meeting our Kyoto targets.

Luke P from Vancouver, Canada writes:

The idea of Carbon Capture and storage is a good one, but John F. rightly pointed out its biggest flaw - it's quite expensive for a project that doesn't actually solve the problem. Even if Felix von Geyer's estimate of $2.5-5 billion is correct (I suspect it would end up being significantly higher), I wonder if that money would not be better spent on technological innovation, of which there is no shortage in this particular field.

It's obvious that technology is going to be the only thing that truly gets us out of the hole we've dug ourselves - the general unwillingness of North Americans to abandon their lives of convenience clearly shows that. Technology has an advantage in that it will eventually become a marketable commodity and can therefore generate revenue, effectively paying back some (or all) of the initial investment. It also serves to address the root problem - replacing carbon emitting technologies with viable alternative sources of energy (the ITER reactor in France is a nice, albeit expensive, example of this).

CC&S is a temporary solution at best, a stopgap measure designed to extend the time frame of global warming. I just think there are more effective ways money can be spent to change carbon emission patterns, specifically through technology.

Ulan Tantor from Canada writes:

The whole concept of GHG emission control in Canada without population control, is total BS.

The politically correct totally ignore this issue whenever it is brought up. They hope it will go away.

There is no point in cutting emissions by 5 %, if you increase the population through immigration by 10 %. When you bring immigrants that use to cause 5% of emissions, (on a per capita basis), to Canada, they instantly join a class of emitters that cause 90% of emissions, (on a per capity basis). Ignoring this issue shows that there is something seriously wrong with the thinking of these people, what other BS are they advocating.

Canada instead of cutting emissions, will double them within 20 years if we do not stabilize the population

Enough BS.

Retired Guy from Canada writes: Trees already do this.

Nicholas Charney from Ottawa, Canada writes:

Ulan makes an excellent point, any 'enviro-solution' that does not account for population increases is nothing more than 'enviro-ignorance'.

Oh ... and don't even get me started about why we must keep our population growing ... viral-like growth eventually meets with swift termination of life, either the virus's or the host's... I wonder which one will outlast the other in this situation.

Human hypocrisy, it seems, knows no bounds.

Peter Lagogianis from Montreal, Canada writes:

It is interesting that comments made here are based on thinking locally and not globally. The problem of CO2 is a global problem, and Canada can be a world leader through technology innovation. CO2 capture technology is already proven, and will undoubtedly help our environmental balance in the long run.

Stu S from Ottawa, Canada writes:

Alright now everyone who is opposed to CCS doesn't fully understand why we have the CO2 problem in the first place. The reason CO2 levels are rising is because we are mining coal and extracting oil and gas from the sub surface. The CO2 was in the sub surface before we extracted it, why does it not make sense to put it back after we extract the energy we need? To those of you who think it won't work to sequester it subsurface, go to your local university and take a structural geology course. Now this is not the ideal soultion, the ideal solution would be to stop extracting coal, oil, and natural gas in the first place and I am all in favor of that, however it would require a total reworking of the economy which would cost a fortune, so hence there is little political or personal will.

John Arthur from Ontario, Canada writes: Planting trees is cheaper, the rest of the story is crap.

BC Refugee in AB from Canada writes:

Mark,

The energy to convert the CO2 back to carbon (C) would be the almost the same amount as was originally derived from burning the fuel in the first place.

John Arthur from Ontario, Canada writes:

Luke P from Vancouver, Canada writes: The idea of Carbon Capture and storage is a good one, but John F. rightly pointed out its biggest flaw - it's quite expensive for a project that doesn't actually solve the problem. Even if Felix von Geyer's estimate of $2.5-5 billion is correct (I suspect it would end up being significantly higher), I wonder if that money would not be better spent on technological innovation, of which there is no shortage in this particular field.

@ roughly $ 2 per sapling, the afore-mentioned Rocket Scientists could plant over 1 to 2 billion trees. The trouble is, we would run out of space in a hurry. The cost savings would be immeasurable, since that technology is proven to work. Stop trying to improve our troubled situation with technology, it's what got us here in the first place.

John Doucette from Manotick, Canada writes:

and will become wealthy if he can sell you on this idea!

Frank N. Stein from Canada writes:

Clearly these granola munchers do not understand that cutting CO2 emissions linerally while the human population grows expentially can not work. This is only high school math, it is not rocket science.

Maybe they should have graduated high school before shooting off their mouths with this twisted incorrect solution.

Edwin Green from carbon, Canada writes:

another way to rip of the little guy big companys geting rich on garb

Dr Coles from Los Angeles, United States writes:

The 100 year old con http://www.InteliOrg.com/archive/FireandIce.pdf on climate change.

In order to be an intelligent reader you must have a basic knowledge. Please do your own homework, a starting point http://www.InteliOrg.com/

Luke P from Vancouver, Canada writes:

John Arthur from Ontario, Canada writes: @ roughly $ 2 per sapling, the afore-mentioned Rocket Scientists could plant over 1 to 2 billion trees. The trouble is, we would run out of space in a hurry. The cost savings would be immeasurable, since that technology is proven to work. Stop trying to improve our troubled situation with technology, it's what got us here in the first place.

It still doesn't SOLVE the problem - conceptually, it's simply another form of carbon storage. This should help illustrate the problem:

Humans emit around 8 billion tonnes of CO2 per year. The yearly increase of CO2 emissions is about 3%, or 240 million tonnes. A generally accepted number for CO2 uptake by trees is about 4.5 tonnes/acre/year. In order to mitigate the INCREASE in CO2 emissions each year, over 53 million acres of trees need to be planted per year. Say an average of about 850 trees per acre, that's 45.3 billion trees.

Similarly, the proposed carbon storage here would cost, say, $5 billion to store 20 million tonnes a year. To stop the yearly increase of emitted CO2, that's 12 similar sized projects at a total cost of $60 billion. And that's ignoring the fact that the rate of increase in emissions per year has gone from 1% in the 90s to 3% in the 2000s. You're telling me that $60 billion can't finance a method to remove these emissions both now and in the future?

Technology got us into this mess, and it appears that it'll be the only thing that will get us out. The difference is that we have now learned that a technology that appears beneficial may, in fact, be doing more harm than good, and is therefore subject to much more scientific scrutiny that it would have been in the past.

Gary Wilson from Calgary, writes:

Carbon stoarage is another band-aid. Gasification deserves more attention.

Ken Hass from edmonton, Canada writes:

Planting trees will only work for so long, if the population keeps expanding.

You can't fix the problem if you keep ignoring it.

It is amazing just how ignorant some people are.

First control population then control emissions and come up with solutions.

Good to see that Ulan, Frank N. Stein, Nicholas Charney and a few others have seen the light.

Ian St. John from Toronto, Canada writes:

One thing is good. We should have lots of space to plant trees as the pine beetle eats up the pine and spruce forests. Of course, that is somewhat of an exercise in spinning wheels,but..

Ian St. John from Toronto, Canada writes:

"Dr Coles from Los Angeles, United States writes: In order to be an intelligent reader you must have a basic knowledge."

Yes, but referencing or promoting junk science is not the way to get 'knowledge'. Only an idjit would think that he is getting knowledge from such drivel.

globefan EH from Canada writes:

Retired Guy, large trees are continually being harvested , even old growth is considered product, logging trucks are busy, in our rush to send raw logs offshore and to the US for processing.

I am perhaps naive in that I wonder what the rush is, when we know these large trees in BC actually benefit the environment and can be used as caarbon offsets. With other countries being fully prepared to take out all of their trees, I wonder why we are in such a rush to cut something down that will be worth more in a few years down the road in both value and in credits.

As to the mantra logging provides jobs, why not retrain loggers to become electricians, mechanics and apprentices of any number of skilled trades. In the BC interior it is almost impossible to find a skilled tradesman.

Posted 24/07/07 at 12:28 PM EDT | Alert an Editor | Link to Comment

Ian St. John from Toronto, Canada writes: "Rick Czarnota from Calgary, writes: Dan Weaver the 'risks' of carbon capture that you site are common issues for every oil and gas project."

Or perhaps they have special issues not related to standard oil wells?

"The ground isn't going to start randomly leaking CO2."

Depends on the barrier layer. CO2 pumped into wells can combine with deep water to produce highly concentrated solutions of carbonic acid. This can 'eat' it's way though some rocks, especially carbonates in sedimentary rocks. It is still an area of study for CO2 sequestration.

A more interesting idea would be to pump CO2 into old mines filled with powdered magnesium silicate rocks, thus causing a chemical reaction to produce stable solids. The barrier to 'mineral sequestration' is the reaction time but this can be beaten by not requiring 'realtime' reactions. One can probably reduce the fineness of the grind for this as you don't need quite as much surface area.

Preserving the 'seal' would then be a limited exercise for whatever short period of time it takes for the reaction to reach completion.

Dave Craigen from Weyburn, Sask, Canada writes:

There are succesful examples of geological carbon storage in Canada and other countries. At Weyburn, there is one project that has been studied by climate scientist (and other scientists) since inception in 2000.

http://www.encana.com/operations/canada/weyburn/index.htm

The science work was coordinated by the Petroleum Technology Research Center in Regina Sask. Their website has a summary of their findings.

http://www.ptrc.ca/

Ian St. John from Toronto, Canada writes:

"Dave Craigen from Weyburn, Sask, Canada writes: At Weyburn, there is one project that has been studied by climate scientist (and other scientists) since inception in 2000.

http://www.encana.com/operations/canada/weyburn/index.htm & http://www.ptrc.ca/ "

It would be more interesting if either reference actually answered my point. The only criteria for 'suitability' seems to be oil recovery, rather than the security of long term sequestration. They do address that a bit at http://tinyurl.com/2bfbd6 though they do not give any reasons for thinking that it will be safe long term.

kevin joncas from Calgary, Canada writes:

Guess one has to burst the bubble. Canada is already the worlds largest carbon sink.The forrests and water systems in this country absorb--read slowly--aproximately 100 TIMES yes that is 100 TIMES as much CO2 as we produce through burning of fossile fuels. When the original Kyoto agreement was put together this was NOT ALLOWED to be considered as counting towards CO2 reduction,because the Euro types knew they could in no way compete with this for their "carbon credits" . Basically Canada got screwed. When the rest of the world comes even close to what this country does to eliminate CO2 I will show some concern ,of course if that happens I won't have to.

Bob Meraw from Poco, Canada writes:

Carbon dioxide sequesterisation although somewhat expensive is a start however there are much easier, cheaper and readily avaliable solutions. Luke P was correct with his statement about trees only storing 4.5 tonnes per acre per year although that is assuming that all the leaves are left to decompose and restore their carbon to the atmosphere. Carbon, not carbon dioxide, storage could be easily and cheaply accomplished by simply storing celluose (ie leaves or plant matter). Kept dry it is of little or no interest to insects or the fungus that normally would break it down. I have seen a barn full of hay stored for nearly 70 years. There is enough room in Canada to store billions of tons of celluose based carbon with the added benefit of releasing the oxygen from the CO2 into the atmosphere . Wood is another medium of storage. The lignin makes it hard to break down as it is not at all tasty. Stored away from moisture it could concevably last for a hundreads of years. Definately long enough for a different solution to be found. Thee is I believe 34 billion tons of celluose produced every year, if we can manage to store 3 billion then the problem is not only solved but reversed as CO2 is less than 1/3 carbon. It was demonstrated in Al Gores movie when he spoke about the levels of CO2 going down in summer. So anyone interested in saving the planet at little cost and little benifit to corporations? Lets get moving!

Ian St. John from Toronto, Canada writes:

"kevin joncas from Calgary, Canada writes: Guess one has to burst the bubble. Canada is already the worlds largest carbon sink.The forrests and water systems in this country absorb--read slowly--aproximately 100 TIMES yes that is 100 TIMES as much CO2 as we produce through burning of fossile fuels. When the original Kyoto agreement was put together this was NOT ALLOWED to be considered as counting towards CO2 reduction"

Well, it also releases large amounts of carbon from rotting vegetation and methane emissions which we are NOT ALLOWED to count against us. The fact that vegetation forms a sink with a large flux in and out again does not matter. What matters is how much is added or taken away from the levels that persist in the atmosphere.

Please rent or buy a clue. The amount we emit is much larger than the forests can 'sequester'.

gilles monenemie from Montreal, Canada writes:

why why why doesn't stephen harper (a trained economist and self declared genius) create a bounty on c02 at $25/tonne to encourage least cost solutions for c02 offset? the reason he doesn't is he doesn't believe in green capitalism, he just want to support oil and gas interests and thats why you will watch him support huge subsidies for carbon capture for the oil and gas industry.

Harper if he was a leader who believed in fiscal resposibility would embrace least cost market solutions, instead watch him pick technology winners. Thats why the government created results based management, was to manage for outcomes, instead of picking winners. Put the price on c02 and watch the winners emerge, otherwise we create giant corporate welfare schemes. So carbon capture advocates, whats your cost per tonne mitigated or are you just making your pitch for a corporate welfare program for your sector?

GlynnMhor of Skywall from Canada writes:

gilles monenemie from Montreal, Canada writes: "... why doesn't Stephen Harper... create a bounty on c02 at $25/tonne to encourage least cost solutions for c02 offset?"

Because this 'bounty' represents a maximum cost. It's an artificial external cost to be imposed on people that has nothing to do with the economics of their activities.

some Name from Calgary, Canada writes:

Burying carbon emmissions is as close to a win-win proposition. as you can ever get. Not only would we bury CO2 instead of releasing it into the air, it will increase how much oil and gas we can get out of existing wells therefore increasing the life and decreasing dependance on imported energy. The only question is cost.

Tim Rutkevich from Canada writes:

One question: Why?

Jasper the Black Lab from Vancouver, Canada writes:

Wasn't this carbon sequestration and storage research and the operating plant in Weyburn Saskatchewan funded by Canada's Dept od Natural Resources under the former Liberal government? I thought the Liberals had done nothing, etc, etc...

And Ian St. John: Buy or rent some tact and some common sense. The boreal forests are a net carbon sink, unlike the tropical jungles where the carbon flux in is exactly balanced by the carbon flux out - in spite of which fact, some lunatics call the Amazon "The Lungs of the Planet"

gilles monenemie from Montreal, Canada writes:

glynn mohr these carbon capture technology dreamers cost more than $50/tonne (they didn't state how bad the news was) which is more than the green parties proposed tax of $50/tonne. Supporting carbon capture is as bozo as paul martin's hydrogen highway. Its just technology on the loose looking for a stupid government and uninformed taxpayer (and i assume you are one) to support it. It joins other corporate welfare schemes like corn ethanol, and hybrid SUV's that are do nothings strategies on GHG mitigation. The government that claims its fiscally responsible doesn't walk its talk.

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