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Recognized by the scientific community as the main cause of global warming, CO2 levels in the atmosphere continue to soar, as confirmed by the November 2019 report of the World Meteorological Organization.
The main cause of this increase is human-induced industrial and economic activity, emitting approximately 35 billion tonnes (35 Gt) of CO2 per year worldwide, to which we must add the effects of deforestation and land urbanization (6 Gt per year).
Vegetation - Oceans - Role - Sinks - Quantities
Vegetation and oceans do play their role as natural sinks by absorbing more than half these quantities, but the surplus continues to accumulate in the atmosphere year after year and is causing a relentless increase in CO2 levels.
The obvious and obligatory solution is to lower our CO2 emissions. This means a drastic reduction in our use of fossil fuels (oil, gas, coal), in parallel with the development of alternative energy sources and vectors (solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, hydroelectricity, hydrogen, etc.).
Change - Overnight - Measures - CO2 - Underground
However, this change will not happen overnight and requires accompanying measures, one of which is to capture the atmospheric CO2 and store it deep underground, from where the carbon originally came. This technology is known as CO2 capture and storage (CCS).
CCS consists in capturing the CO2 contained in the flue gas of industrial plants, then injecting it deep underground (1,000 meters or more) via a dedicated well. The gaseous CO2 is compressed before injection into a denser state (but still lighter than water), thus enabling its injection in large quantities. The storage site is carefully selected so that the CO2 remains permanently trapped and typically consists of a porous reservoir rock with spaces between the grains (pores) containing salt water (not potable). It is overlain by an impermeable cap rock preventing any rise toward the surface of the portion of CO2 not trapped in the rock pores or dissolved in the...
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