CO2 Inhaling Plants

Area of sustainability: Pollution and health

Sustainability issue:

Pollution from cars, trucks, ships et.c. is an ever-increasing problem, and heavily localized pollution is a health hazard for the population.

Technology:

  • A number of startup companies has designed a solution that will help with this issue. It is based on building plants that will suck in the polluted air, and convert the CO2 to usable products, such as diesel fuel. This way, the pollution will be recycled and reused instead of being released into the atmosphere where it can harm the environment.
  • This will also be beneficial in big cities like Shanghai where air pollution is a huge health hazard, and people are advised to stay indoors when it is at peak levels. This should not be necessary, and this technology can help aid this.
  • This technology will reduce the effect of CO2 emissions from cars, ships, plants, farm equipment et.c. and in turn roll back the atmospheric concentrations of CO2 by directly capturing CO2 from the air.

Stakeholders:

  • Government
  • Plant facility management
  • Construction companies
  • Engineers
  • Maintenance companies

 

Implementation:

  1. Find the areas in a city where a plant like this would have the greatest effect
  2. Get permission from the government to build one of these plants near the city
  3. Make sure all procedures in the plant are well thought out, and that the processes will go safely

 

Main article: https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/jul/14/carbon-direct-air-capture-startups-tech-climate

Other sources: http://www.healthandsafetyinshanghai.com/shanghai-air-quality.html

UNI: ms5584

My comment on another article:

https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/10/12/using-drones-to-monitor-air-pollution/#respond

“This will enable testing the air quality in areas that are not usually easily accessible. It is also a cost efficient way to analyze the air quality, so that more of the available funds can be spent on the research and development of solutions which will help improve the air and thus also the health of the population.”

Using photosynthesis to convert CO2 into ethanol and ethylene

https://phys.org/news/2017-09-solar-to-fuel-recycles-co2-ethanol-ethylene.html

UNI – js5079 (Joshua Strake)

Sustainability Problems: Energy + Waste

  • The new technology enables sunlight to convert carbon dioxide into usable forms of liquid fuels, such as ethanol and ethylene.
  • Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Berkeley Labs developed the technology, which has reached efficiencies as high as 5%, reducing CO2 to a hydrocarbon end product over a certain amount of sun-time.
  • The technology can also function in low-light settings, although the main interest in this case would be the reduction of CO2 and the ability to use Solar-powered fuels at any time of the day, so whether o not the technology works at night isn’t as relevant, since the byproduct of the technology (the fuel) can be used at night. THis helps solve the issues must-take forms of energy face.
  • The main science behinf the technology is a “copper-silver nanocoral cathode” which breaks the CO2 down, and “an iridium oxide nanotube anode, which oxidizes the water and creates oxygen”.

3. Organizational Stakeholders: Scientists at Berkeley, Developers/Manufactuers, the Government (DoE project).

4. Three potential steps to roll out:

1 – Get better at it. (Achieve higher efficiency, optimize build and design)

2 – Standardize a means of production at large scales

3 – Engage utilities and contract developers to begin working the technology into the energy industry.