#GeoEngineering - more prevalent than u know

#GeoEngineering – more prevalent than u know (Photo credit: joykennelly)

In the wake of the realization that climate change is a reality, a geoengineering technology incorporating the use of artificial trees to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is a clear indication that “God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy”.  Geoengineering is defined as “climate engineering, climate remediation, and climate intervention” .(1)  Geoengineering has been used primarily to refer to “the deliberate large-scale intervention in the Earth’s climate system, in order to moderate global warming“.  It typically involves efforts to rid the atmosphere of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and solar radiation management techniques to “offset effects of increased greenhouse gas concentration by causing the Earth to absorb less solar radiation“. (2)

It has been noted that scientists at Columbia University’s Earth Institute are working on a “carbon capture” project, which involves the use of a prototype of artificial trees that will remove carbon dioxide from the air “faster and at higher levels than natural photosynthesis can accomplish”. (3)  This group postulates that the captured carbon dioxide then can be released by a “gentle flow of water” and then can be used industrially or safely sequestered underground.  Many environmentalists take an exception to technological fixes for global warming, such as these because such actions “discourage us from the hard work of actually cutting down on greenhouse emissions”.  The main consideration here is whether the goal here is climate manipulation or solutions to address climate change.

The reality here is that trees are not the culprits in this scenario.  They consistently have done their job well.  They effectively reflect the “greatness of God“.  It is man who has disrupted this process by actions that increase our carbon footprint, namely pollution of land, air and water, reliance on fossil fuels, and to a large extent, deforestation.  Consideration of ethics and moral responsibility is a very valid approach to this issue.  Followers of the green movement recognize themselves as “stewards” of the Earth.  We have a duty to protect the environment and to pass on a healthy world to future generations.  This notion of benevolent management of the world has a foundation in religion, ethics and morality and must not be diminished by greed, politics or sheer lack of responsibility.

Now on to the role of beer (which is good) and its relationship to the idea of artificial trees, in particular, and geoengineering, in general.  So many of us are caught up in a rat race.  You have to admit that when you take a break with an ice-cold beer, the stress level goes down and you can reflect on life.  Now you can appreciate a tree as opposed to the stressful periods when you “couldn’t see the forest for the trees”.  Things start to make sense.  You realize that so many things about life have become artificial, and maybe we should stop this nonsense.

Finally, the acceptance of artificial trees clearly would indicate that people are crazy.  By definition, artificial means “humanly contrived, often on a natural model, manmade, simulated; sham”  Already we rely on so many artificial products and ingredients which ultimately bear heavy costs in terms of money, waste, and adverse health consequences.  Now trees?  To this notion, we must say a resounding NO.  We can grow trees with seeds made by trees.  We do not need to manufacture them artificially.

We can address climate change by a consolidated effort to avoid pollution, recycling, reducing our fuel and energy consumption and living responsibly.  We do not want climate manipulation.  Rather, we demand climate change solutions.  We want to live green, be green.

Sources for this article:

1.  United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) (July 2011) (PDF). Climate Engineering: Technical Status, Future Directions, and Potential Responses (Report). Center for Science, Technology, and Engineering. p. 3. Retrieved 2011-12-01.

2.  Royal Society (September 2009) (PDF). Geoengineering the Climate: Science, Governance and Uncertainty (Report). p. 1. ISBN 978-0-85403-773-5. Retrieved 2011-12-01.

3.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-schiffman/artificial-trees-carbon-capture_b_2728083.html.

4.  Credit to Bill Currington from song “People Are Crazy”.



Here at livegreenbegreen, we are always searching for new and inventive ways to maintain a green lifestyle. So when I came across this article which detailed the environmental effects of our deaths, my interest peaked to say the least.

The article, written by Yuan Gao and Robert Short, describes the environmental problem our passing’s cause as, “Every cremation creates about 160 kg of carbon dioxide (CO2).” This is a particular problem in China where nearly five million bodies were cremated in 2011 alone. More staggering is that the rate of cremation is increasing due to the aging population, which ultimately will result in an estimated 143,066 tons of additional CO2 being emitted. This figure fails to mention the other pollutions that will be released as a result of the process including, “…Sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, monoxide, hydrocarbons, hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, hydrogen chloride, hydrogen fluoride, and mercury among others.”

Thankfully, the authors propose greener options to combat this growing problem. They advocate, “Burying the corpse in a simple and biodegradable bag or container under a tree, without building stone tombs or erecting tombstones.” This ultimately would save valuable land space in addition to reducing the emissions from a cremation alternative. Also, the additive of placing the bodies near trees enables them to absorb CO2 that naturally emits from the decaying body and enables them to grow naturally and sustainably. Lastly, this practice saves wood for those buried in wood coffins, and makes  ecological sense in that our bodies, in an act of retribution, serve as a natural fertilizer for the earth we used during our lifetimes.

While we tend to focus on changing our current habits to affect the world in a positive place, similarly our posthumous actions can have a lasting impact on our environment. By changing the way we think, we can all have a positive bearing on our planet both during our lifetime, and after death.

Source: http://theconversation.edu.au/dying-green-environmentally-friendly-burials-in-china-9857


Here at LGBG, we like to provoke outside the box thinking such as: what do otters and the green movement have in common? To the surprise of most, otters, help to remove harmful greenhouse gases primarily through their consumption of sea urchins. As stated in National Geographic, sea urchin’s diet consist primarily of kelp, a natural carbon dioxide absorber. By preying on the urchins, sea otters are doing their part to sustain the kelp population, and simultaneously aiding in the absorption of potentially dangerous greenhouse gases.

One might ask, can otters really make that much of an impact on our environment? And despite kelp being able to, “absorb as much as 12 times the amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than if it were subject to ravenous sea urchins” Jeffrey Dukes of the Purdue Climate Change Research Center in Indiana flatly answered “no”. He noted it was interesting to realize that such a relationship existed, but that its global effect would be minimal.

The real importance however lies firmly in what many biologists already know: that animals interact with living and non-living things in ways that are complex and inately intertwined. Yet, by studying these relationships further with a keen eye towards their effects on the environment, a sophisticated schedule can be set up detailing each particular relationship’s positive and or negative impact through their respective carbon footprint. Surely a painstaking process, the rewards of such an understanding are invaluable and will take us one step closer to a world in which we all live green, and be green.

source: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/09/120910-sea-otters-global-warming-urchins-kelp-frontiers-science/