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New analysis makes use of geothermal power to slash emissions

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain

A University of Canterbury (UC) Ph.D. pupil has recognized a renewable and reasonably priced power supply with the flexibility to take away carbon dioxide ( CO2) from the ambiance.

The analysis, from UC Civil and Natural Resources Engineering Ph.D. pupil Karan Titus, investigates taking scorching water from geothermal reservoirs and burning forestry waste to superheat it—producing electrical energy. The geothermal water is then injected again underground together with the CO2 produced from the burning wooden.

Karan says the method, often called Geothermal-Bioenergy and Carbon Capture and Sequestration, or BECCS, has vital advantages. “We are creating extra clear, renewable energy, whereas not directly eradicating CO2 from the ambiance—Geothermal-BECCS crops may retailer 1 million tons of usable CO2 annually in underground geothermal reservoirs.

“We can also generate significantly more renewable energy using this process when compared to traditional geothermal power. The BECCS system is also more cost-effective per ton of CO2 than other common climate change mitigation strategies due to decarbonization on two fronts: more renewable power and the secure storage of CO2.”

The technique of immediately separating CO2 from the air and storing it in geothermal reservoirs is presently utilized in Iceland however isn’t but utilized in Aotearoa New Zealand. Karan’s analysis is the primary to discover pairing CO2 with injection to spice up geothermal power manufacturing, which is created by burning biomass; a forestry by-product that features slash, which brought about widespread harm following Cyclone Gabrielle.

UC Engineering senior lecturers Dr. Rebecca Peer and Dr. David Dempsey are supervising Karan’s analysis. Dr. Peer believes this type of modern pondering is what we have to sort out the problem of decarbonization at scale.

“A carbon-negative energy cycle would be very valuable to Aotearoa’s long-term energy and sustainability goals. It is exciting to be a part of research at UC tackling a global issue like climate change with potential solutions that leverage our Indigenous resources and provide a pathway to address national issues such as forestry slash,” she says.

Dr. Dempsey believes Karan’s analysis addresses the affordability of local weather change motion—one of many key challenges going through Aotearoa New Zealand’s objective to attain net-zero emissions by 2050.

“A major problem facing Aotearoa as we try to decarbonize our economy is how we can retain our standard of living, while cutting our fossil-fuel emissions, but without bankrupting the country,” Dr. Dempsey says.

Karan, who goals to graduate in mid-2024, says his curiosity on this space stems from his childhood.

“From when I was a child and watched An Inconvenient Truth’, climate change has always been on my mind. Hearing back then that excessive emissions will result in extreme weather events—such as droughts, wildfires, brutal hurricanes, and immense floods—and seeing that happen now, makes me want to do something to help protect people, animals and the environment,” he explains.

“This is my way of contributing at a local level. No single solution will save us; we need to be fast-acting to find the best fit solution for our community without wasting any more decades.”

New analysis makes use of geothermal power to slash emissions (2023, March 10)
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