What’s Wrong with this Picture? Carbon Capture Shell Game

December 29, 2021

It’s a short video from the usually solid Diana Olick- and I kept waiting for the punchline – OK if they’re capturing carbon, what do they do with it?
Make more fossil fuel, bubbles for Coca-Cola, and enhanced recovery of, you guessed it, more oil.
No commentary on the circular logic here makes this a fail.

9 Responses to “What’s Wrong with this Picture? Carbon Capture Shell Game”

  1. dumboldguy Says:

    “OK if they’re capturing carbon, what do they do with it?” “Make more fossil fuel, bubbles for Coca-Cola, and enhanced recovery of, you guessed it, more oil”.

    Would be LMAO at this, but it’s not funny. Carbon capture, with it’s long time frame and huge expenses is just a distraction. Only the get-rich-fast hedge funds and the fuel companies are going to benefit.

  2. neilrieck Says:

    The reality of the situation is this: until the world’s supply of (~ 5000) cargo ships and passenger jets go electric, we will need some form of liquid carbon-based fuels. While I have always been opposed to CCS because it is too inefficient, creating fuels from existing CO2 in the atmosphere ensures that no new CO2 is being added. Anyway, I wonder how many people know that most current schemes are based upon this original Canadian pilot plant which began in 2009.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_Engineering
    https://carbonengineering.com/

  3. mboli Says:

    Underneath where I am sitting now, in Indiana, is several hundred feet of carbonate rock: limestones and shales. It is sequestered carbon, that came from the atmosphere. Much of the continent has a thick upper layer of sequestered carbon.

    (Of course in the long-term slow carbon cycle the carbonate rock eventually weathers, but that is beside the point.)

    Almost none of the carbon capture schemes have any plan for long-term (millions of years) sequestration. I agree they are a kind of scam. It might make sense regulating these companies. Permit them to sell carbon offsets only if they can prove they are truly sequestering the carbon.

    It is do-able, darn it. Carbon can chemically combine with some rock, and stay underground. It may not be economic, but it isn’t chemically impossible.

    I can almost see the point in recycling the carbon into carbon fuel. But enhanced recovery should be a no-no. Selling carbon offsets and then using the CO2 for mining more fossil fuels should be securities fraud or something of the sort.

    • dumboldguy Says:

      “Selling carbon offsets and then using the CO2 for mining more fossil fuels should be securities fraud or something of the sort”.

      AMEN!

    • greenman3610 Says:

      agree I can almost see recycling carbon into fuel, which would at least be neutral, if the energy inputs are clean. But that’s only for end uses where some kind of liquid fuel is the only choice, and I’m not sure that will be true 20 years from now.

      • mboli Says:

        The problem is people are selling carbon credits. Somebody put a ton of CO2 in the air, and paid a carbon capture companies to remove a ton. But if the captured ton of carbon isn’t permanently removed from circulation, then it doesn’t offset the ton which was permanently emitted.

        Capturing carbon would be OK as a carbon fuel cycle: oxidized to produce power, then reduced back to carbon using renewable energy. Same idea as hydrogen fuel cycle. I knew an engineer who got government grants to work on using metals: oxidized in fuel cells and batteries, reduced back to metal in a solar furnace.

        But if direct air capture companies are selling carbon offsets, and then putting the carbon back in the atmosphere, it strikes me as a kind of fraud.

    • neilrieck Says:

      I have no problem with anything sequestered naturally but do object to burning fossil fuels then using some of the energy to sequester CO2 (people who believe in such things usually also believe perpetual motion machines). But “if” we still have need for fossil fuels in “certain” applications then I see nothing wrong with creating these fuels by extracting CO2 provided the power source is wind or solar.


Leave a Reply to dumboldguy Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: