Undersea CO2 storage in giant bags studied

Feb. 19, 2008 at 2:46 PM
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CALGARY, Alberta, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- A Canadian scientist says the idea of storing 160 million tons of CO2 in a giant sausage-like bag on the ocean's floor isn't as silly as it might seem.

David Keith of the University of Calgary said such a container would have to be about 325 feet in radius and several miles long, resting on the seabed nearly two miles below the ocean's surface.

"There are a lot of gee-whiz ideas for dealing with global warming that are really silly," said Keith, an expert on carbon capture and sequestration. "At first glance this idea looks nutty, but as one looks closer it seems that it might (be) technically feasible with current-day technology."

Keith said such a solution would be a potentially useful complement to CO2 storage in geological formations. He said it might be workable because vast flat plains cover huge areas of the deep oceans. The abyssal plains have little life and are benign environments. "If you stay away from the steep slopes from the continental shelves, they are a very quiet environment," he said.

Keith discussed the topic this week in Boston during the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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