‘Five cheap ways to remove CO2 from the atmosphere’ and kill 40% of the people of Earth.

Guest hyperbole by David Middleton

Climate change: Five cheap ways to remove CO2 from the atmosphere

By Matt McGrath
Environment correspondent
25 October 2018

[…]

5 – Biomass energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS)
The idea of BECCS is to grow energy crops that soak up carbon, which are then burned to create electricity while the emitted CO2 gas is captured and buried permanently underground.
BECCS has been dismissed by many because of the massive amounts of land that would be needed, up to 40% of global cropland according to some studies.

[…]

“If you have dedicated bioenergy crops that displace other land uses, such as forests or farms, the production of food and fibre would be reduced and you could increase the prices of commodities and really drive losses in biodiversity and ecosystem services,” said Kelly Levin from WRI.
“BECCS needs to be done in a very careful way.”

BBC

To paraphrase Dr. Ian Malcolm in The Lost World: Jurassic Park:

Using 40% of global cropland for BECCS is the worst idea in the long, sad history of bad ideas.

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77 thoughts on “‘Five cheap ways to remove CO2 from the atmosphere’ and kill 40% of the people of Earth.

  1. I used to joke that the best way to end the global warming scam would be to take everyone who was concerned to a small island and there explode a nuclear bomb and show how that would induce a mild reduction in climate known to the 1970s alarmists as “a nuclear winter”.

    • If you took the 40% of the population that believe in the CAGW narrative to this ‘small’ island before you exploded your nuclear bomb, that would be one way for them to meet their death wish. The sensitivity for CO2 in the atmosphere certainly doesn’t seem to be materializing, and probably won’t be a threat to humanity in any case, unless a tiny bit warmer is a threat, or greening of the biosphere is a problem. Which it obviously isn’t. Fossil fuels and CO2 are probably the best thing that ever happened for the people of the good Earth in the scheme of things. Unless you don’t like progress or 7.4 billion people on the planet.

      It’s a good thing this article is filed under guest hyperbole, since how do you get to killing 40% of the population of the earth with biomass? It isn’t mentioned anywhere in this post, or the referenced BBC article, which was rather tame for BBC standards. The carbon sequestration and storage probably doesn’t make economic sense unless used commercially for further oil extraction, but recycling CO2 probably does. The good Earth does it on vast geological timescales, so mimicking this by humans probably makes sense for the longer term future. Where else is humankind going to get long chain carbon molecules for the thousands of products we use every day. Whether fossil fuels last 50 years or 150 years, the price point will come some day making them uneconomic. And then what else are we going to use for our carbon requirements, other than biomass and/or electricity to create long chain carbon molecules out of CO2 directly that humanity will require for the next ten thousand years.

      There is nothing wrong with responsible biomass energy, as long as it isn’t commercially subsidized over FF’s, since then it can compete with any other energy source fairly. This probably happens when an BOE is $250 a barrel, which is definitely in the cards the next 10-20 years, or maybe even sooner. Biomass for carbon based products is the future, if you believe that humans survive for the next ten thousand years. What else is there after finite fossil fuels exceed the price point to develop them economically for our carbon requirements?

  2. How are we supposed to reduce CO2 emissions, when China is double our emissions now…doesn’t even have to think about it until 2030…and is building coal plants faster than we can close one?

    Anyone that makes that rule…UN/IPCC…doesn’t even believe their own science

    • Communist & communist/hybrid countries that produce cheap stuff by stealing intellectual property, burning coal, and paying low wages are rewarded.

      • Developing countries have always had cheaper labor.
        It’s offset by the other costs of doing business in those places, such as corruption, poor infrastructure, the need to train workers, etc.

        Over time, the country develops and wages automatically rise.
        It happened to Japan, Korea, Taiwan, it’s happening in Singapore, India and China.

        • Are some “developing countries” permanently in that category because of their communist/hybrid governments? There seems to be a correlation between the degree of thought control within a country and the shortage of intellectual property. Thus you need to find it elsewhere. Just a theory.

          • Try to think climate change is rubbish and you will see how thought control is more intense here than in China. Anyway what is a mere 40% of the population compared to the rate when the clever Eco scientists have developed their plastic eating bug and it ends the electrical era by eating all insulation. Assuming it does not eat the containment for smallpox and anthrax first and get us that way or the gas pipe network explodes.

      • CO2 from communist countries is beneficial CO2. It is only Western nations who emit the dangerous kind of CO2.

      • no. not rewarded. Supply and demand.

        There was a demand for cheap labour and low environmental regulations by Apple Nike and so on and so on, and the Chinese had a massive population in poverty and little environment regs

    • AGW does believe their own science and it only applies to western democratic nations. Have you seen a climate love fest where they lauded the west for reducing co2 emissions? Have you seen them say anything other than a communist controlled system is the only way to save the planet?
      Nobody but the west has reduced carbon emissions. If you talk to anyone in China or India, not a one of them believes in ‘climate change’. If they give lip service to it, it is to gain either money or trade from the west.

    • I always ask warmists when they are joining the Military.
      Because if this is such a time sensitive disaster in the making, force will be the only way to stop China and India.
      If they really believe it’s earth ending, shouldn’t they be more concerned with everyone else that’s doing nothing first?

  3. I propose that the next time Matt McGrath catches a cold, he undergoes chemotherapy, radiation treatments, and a liver transplant. Just to give him a sense of proportion.

    • That would be a great way to give all of the Climate Nazis a badly needed sense of proportion!

      Actually it shouldn’t be when they catch a cold, it should be when they sneeze because of something tickling their noses; a cold would actually be a “problem” to some degree, whereas allegedly human-induced “climate change” is a complete non-problem.

      But your “treatment” suggestion is spot-on, because that’s exactly what their proposed “actions” to “fight” climate change amount to. A lot of costly, unnecessary and harmful actions to, at the end of the day, do NOTHING about a NON-EXISTENT “problem.”

  4. If they really wanted to increase biomass they probably ought to start spray-fertilizing the northern forests with extra nutrients. Pretty pointless I know, but I do sometimes think it might be easier to throw the Matt McGraths of the world a bone and (apparently) help them out with their dim ideas. Maybe I would then have to take less paracetamol for BBC-induced earache.

    But then again, no, I probably wouldn’t. It is appeasement. These people will never shut up until the BBC doesn’t have funds to pay them.

  5. So would it only be for generating electricity? This sounds worse than glazing the earth with solar panels or tufting it with windmills. Whi sits around “ideating” (to use a Lewindowskyesque verb to make it sciency) this stuff up. I’m sure no engineers were disturbed in this enterprise.

    • They list that as one option. The absurdity of it is two-fold: One, we already are, but not because of “climate change”, but rather, because trees are useful in many ways. Could more be planted? Possibly, but not much more, and only in areas that have been previously stripped of trees for one reason or another. And Two, as mentioned, the areas available for tree-planting are relatively limited. Planting trees is one of those “feel-good” activities. I mean sure, you get a tree, possibly, if planted right, and given some care to make sure it doesn’t just die. But so what? Maybe you should’ve planted carrots instead.

      • There are a LOT of places that could be planted with trees and other plants to increase captured biomass. We don’t have to touch farmland, either – quite a lot of North America is tree-friendly but not good for agriculture.

        Of course, we could also do some semi-permanent carbon capture if we just stopped recycling paper. Start collecting old paper products, and instead of spending extra energy to remake them into lower-quality paper goods, just bury them in old strip mines and other holes in the ground. How many millions of tons of CO2 per year could we sequester that way?

        • I highly doubt that. If they “could” be planted with trees, then why wouldn’t they already be? Trees have value in their own right, and it has nothing to do with “carbon”, much as you seem to believe. I already know what you think, though, as a climate numpty. You think people should be paid to plant trees, to help “protect the planet”. And then you want people to get paid to sequester said “carbon”. Yes, the climate racket could be quite profitable. If only more people would truly “Believe”.
          As for the inane idea of burying paper, again, part of the climate racket paid for by taxpayers and ratepayers. Nope.

          • I highly doubt that. If they “could” be planted with trees, then why wouldn’t they already be?

            Many many reasons.

            Many of which are to do with what other uses the land has and the cost of planting and harvesting trees.

            Its is however as stupid an idea as any Green has come up with,

      • The earth has 3 trillion trees apparently counted using satellite imagery. The planet has greened dramatically over the past 35yrs including 15% added forest cover. It seems this coukd be more than 450 billion trees (15% cover of immature trees probably means more trees). Why compete with this riot of tree planting except for impriving our gardens and parks. The planet just quietly goes 9n looking after itself – this is very annoying.

  6. None of these ideas will ever come close to the amount of CO2 being absorbed each year by the polar ocean sinks. Nor will all the smoke-stacks and tail-pipes in the world ever come close to the amount of CO2 being released to the atmosphere each year from tropical ocean sources.

  7. Matt McGrath is one of the many members of the Greenblob employed by the BBC to spread the climate change propaganda. He is on a par with Harrabin, Shukman and Heap, but there are hundreds of others in the BBC who have to mention climate change at every opportunity (or else they are banished and lose their massive salaries).

    • Meanwhile:

      GWPF Welcomes Investigation Into BBC Impartiality

      London, 26 October: The Global Warming Policy Forum has welcomed Ofcom’s announcement that it is to launch an investigation into BBC impartiality.

      The GWPF has been a prominent critic of the BBC’s habitual bias in its reporting of renewable energy, climate change and climate policy, and in particular its lack of viewpoint diversity among its environmental journalists.

      Speaking about the Ofcom announcment, GPWF director, Dr Benny Peiser said:

      “On climate change and renewable energy, the BBC has long since given up any semblance of impartiality. Several former BBC journalists have confirmed as much.

      The latest British Social Attitudes Survey reveals that only around a quarter of the public has major concerns over the impacts of global warming and that only a third thinks that humans are the main cause of climate change. This is in sharp contrast to the BBC’s environmental journalists whose message of impending disaster is dominating its news coverage.

      The BBC is not supposed to be a vehicle for its journalists’ prejudices. Unless it begins to reflect the views of the British public and the full spectrum of reasonable views on climate and energy the growing distrust of the BBC will only accelerate”.

      Contact

      Dr Benny Peiser
      Director, Global Warming Policy Forum
      55 Tufton Street, London SW1P 3QL
      e: peiser@thegwpf.com
      t: 0207 3406066
      m: 07553 361717

  8. Using 40% of global cropland for BECCS is the worst idea in the long, sad history of bad ideas.

    BINGQ!

    • Let’s generalize…

      Doing ANYTHING that squander huge amounts of resources to combat a NON-EXISTENT “problem” is the worst idea in the long, sad history of bad ideas.

      • We are already wasting an appalling amount of energy and brain cells on a political ideal called AGW. This is just more lame stupidity to add to the massive drain on humanity this has become.

        • Yes. It ought to be a no-brainer. Economists understand well enough the long term political and economic consequences of an Economy that grows at 3.0% annually compared to an Economy that grows at 0.0% annually. Stagnation. Misery.

          Then the greens come along with a grand plan to actually shrink the Economy every year by making energy more expensive, and, by Jove, these economists are suddenly nowhere to be found. Except for those slurping at the green trough.

  9. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2018/sep/13/harrison-ford-stop-giving-power-climate-deniers/

    Notes from an energy expert:

    Fully 85% of global primary energy is fossil fuels, and the rest is hydro and nuclear. Green energy would be near-zero except for huge wasted subsidies and use mandates. Only a few places have enough hydro to provide their needs, and greens hate hydro. The only practical alternative is nuclear, and the greens hate nuclear too.

    Eliminate fossil fuels, and most people in the developed world would freeze or starve to death within a few months. This means you and your family.

    • I’ve got a better idea for Harrison Ford and the rest of the deluded idiots that think humanity can do anything measurable or significant to the climate.

      Stop giving THEM power. As in electricity, gasoline, heating oil, natural gas, etc. Since they think it’s doing harm, they shouldn’t get any. OR the food produced through its use.

      After they’ve all done their part (you know, frozen to death or starved to death in the dark to “save the planet”), the rest of us can get on with our lives and not have to listen to their stupid blather about the “climate change” boogyman.

  10. I would not assume that they care how many people they kill as long as it is not them and they get their money.

  11. Carbon capture. Can climate doomsayers not speak in whole molecules?

    But anyway… saying is not the same as doing. Sequesteting CO2 is not technology we have or look like we shall have soon.

    On the other hand. The oceans and plants have been doing CO2 sequestration since God was in short trousers so why not leave them to it? Mankind has been dealing with climate change, often severe, for our entire existance, so we are quite good at it.

    What’s the prob?

    • De Beers, Diamond Foundry, and others are sequestering Carbon. They don’t suggest putting it underground however. The process does (now) require vapor deposition and a 7,000° F process.
      It’s a start.

  12. Used to be that the prototype of a socialist make work project was a team of workers where those who aren’t holding pointless signs and leaning on shovels are divided into two teams. One is digging holes and the second follows behind filling them in. Now climate science has brought us the 21st century high tech version. Good thing there are elections. Once people see their very comfortable lives being ruined by this idiocy they can take action at the polls.

  13. …‘Five cheap ways to remove CO2 from the atmosphere’ and kill 40% of the people of Earth….

    How much CO2 would we have to remove to get the concentration down to around 100ppm?

    That would kill all the plants, and shortly thereafter ALL the people…

  14. If one really plans to decrease atmospheric CO2 using biomass, I would think that one should plow the plant material under at the end of the growing season, not burn it for energy.

    Something about conservation laws …

  15. Just to put CO2 reduction into perspective, the last time the atmospheric level was at 350 ppm was in 1988, when the global population was 5.5 bn (are you listening, Mr McKibben?). Today, with CO2 levels at about 410 ppm we have a population of 7.5 bn, and coincidentally the Earth has greened by about 14% since 1988. 70% of this greening is generally accepted to be due to increased CO2 levels.

    Since crop yields have increased markedly since 1988, also largely as a result of increased CO2 levels, I rather suspect that we would find it very difficult to feed 7.5 bn if, by some magic, CO2 levels were reduced back to 350 ppm. Not to put too fine a point on it, a reduction back to 350 ppm would result in mass starvation and vicious world wars as the survivors fight for the remaining food. But then, that might be what the CAGW crowd really wants.

  16. I notice that these guys take the most expensive route to implement even a bad idea! Why grow non- food specific crops, then burn them, then sequester the CO2 and not
    1) sequester the crops directly (e.g, make coal for future generations)
    2) take the CO2 directly out of the atmosphere.
    3) merely sequester the chaff from food crops (e.g, straw and corn stalks)? After all, in the majority of most food crop bulk is the non-edible stalks and leaves. (Leaving aside what the lack of the tilled and composting residue would do to the land).

  17. Co2 market should pay people producing fuel wood. Automatically. No papers. Just cash.
    Where is it our co2 taxes money?

  18. I’ll light another bonfire this weekend to push back more useful CO2 into the atmosphere, but our contribution is small as there ability to extract it.
    Trouble is CAGW has become Science Politics And Money i.e. SPAM, maybe not a SCAM (Science Corruption And Money) but and accidental series of events with JH trying to get his PhD and then AlGoreRithm-Mann starting the snowball running (Oh no that Global Cooling) ; soon however everyone will ignore the dire sky is falling doomsday ClimateChangeCult with any luck 😀

  19. Biomass as a carbon source for highly processed or synthetic transportation fuels could eventually become economic. But the carbon capture and storage part is a really bad idea.

    Eventually the misconception about carbon dioxide and other non-condensible “greenhouse gases” will come to light with this explanation: To the extent that the atmosphere behaves as a static or layered fluid, sure, it “traps” heat because of infrared absorption and emission. But to the extent that it behaves as a heat engine, with its powerful vertical mass flows and heat rates, one readily sees that the intense radiative coupling of the dense atmosphere to the surface helps drive it. So if you make that radiative coupling a bit stronger by adding CO2, what will happen? The effectiveness of the composite working fluid of the heat engine would be improved. Higher performance.

    Some years ago, in a letter to the editor of Mechanical Engineering magazine, a reader described carbon dioxide as a “helper molecule” to water vapor concerning the operation of the atmosphere. I wish now I had kept that issue, because after following the global warming debate and considering the arguments, I think I understand what he meant.

  20. If BECCS killed off only 40% of the human population that wouldn’t be enough. Estimates put the ideal population for Earth at about 1.5 billion – 2 billion. The current population of Earth is about 7.7 billion.

    IOW we need a decarbonizing solution that will get rid of carbon while at the same time eliminating about 6 billion humans or about 80% of humanity.

    Perhaps the UN could get a contest going that would do both? Decarbonize the atmosphere and kill off 80% of humanity?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optimum_population
    http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

  21. Five cheap ways to remove CO2 from the atmosphere’ and kill 40% of the people of Earth.

    That sound like quotation from Avengers: Infinity War where evil Thanos wants to wipe off half of the population of the Universe in order to preserve remaining half.

  22. The basic premise that CO2 should be removed from Earth’s atmosphere is false.
    Pragmatic, unbiased observation shows that adding more CO2 to the atmosphere is adding life to Earth via ubiquitous photosynthesis.
    Since CO2 can’t accumulate in the atmosphere, it must be constantly replenished via the global biogeochemical carbon cycle. Just as water does not accumulate in a river, it must be constantly replenished.

  23. A good approach to get this done is to turn urban areas back to forest areas. Starving people to death is inhumane. I more humane way would be to get rid of urban and suburban areas with thermonuclear devices. No one has to know and all the devices can be set off at the same time world wide. This approach would not only provide more land for forests in a big hurry but greatly reduce human population and the CO2 that those humans produce..

  24. Bwahahahahahahaha! This is a good one.

    I see a perpetual motion machine lurking… more CO2, more plants, more burning, more CO2, more plants, more burning…
    Losses due to chain saw fuel, trucks, roads, etc. will doom this concept due to lack of perfect efficiency in the process. All this will do is ultimately create even more CO2 than we’d otherwise have.

    Next!

  25. EPA has called CO2 pollution as many other politicians and scientists have done. They have a sloppy language so they call it often for carbon pollution.
    Humans and the Earth can not suvive without a fair amount of CO2 in the air, so could they please tell at what level it is beneficiary and at what level it is pollution.
    If we ended all the burning of fossils i believe the CO2 level would fall 2ppm each year. At what level should we start burning again?

  26. There’s a problem with ANY attempt to remove CO2 from the atmosphere. It’s a BIG problem, and it covers around 70% of the Earth’s surface – the oceans.
    There’s around 50 times the amount of CO2 dissolved in the oceans than is in the atmosphere. The CO2 in in dynamic equilibrium between the two mediums. It’s constantly dissolving in oceans, lakes and rivers, and being emitted at the same rate from them.
    Henry’s Law relates solubility with temperature and pressure. Look it up!
    Given no change in atmospheric pressure or ocean temperature from current, 98% of human-emitted CO2 will end up in the oceans.
    In recent decades, less than 98% net has been dissolving in the oceans because ocean temperatures have been increasing somewhat, resulting in lower CO2 solubility, and steadily rising atmospheric CO2.
    What controls CO2 in the atmosphere is not what we emit, but ocean temperature.
    Remove large amounts of CO2 from the atmosphere, and equilibrium will be restored by the oceans emitting CO2. Atmospheric CO2 would ultimately be reduced by only a very small net amount.
    You’d think all these scientists and “geo-engineers” would be aware of this, but not one of them is.

  27. What if there was a way that was affordable for the coal fired utilities to operate putting into the atmosphere less CO2 than a natural gas power plant? Might they be open to research it?
    Combusting coal to produce America’s electricity is good for our Economy and doing it with minimal emissions is great for our Environment.
    We would like to see these coal mining communities thriving again. We want to know that they have good paying jobs, and they are supporting their families.
    The Carbon Capture Utilization System is affordable https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQRQ7S92_lo
    and can make that happen. We need some Federal help to make it happen.
    There are many agencies that appear to want to help. We need you the people to go to your elected officials, or someone you know in these communities and let them know that There Is A Clean Coal Solution available to them.

    • There is absolutely NO NEED to reduce CO emissions.

      Its just putting sequestered carbon back into the shorter term carbon cycle where it belongs.

      Yes, reducing real pollution from coal power is good, but these carbon capture mechanisms are a pointless expense that should be avoided.

      The Earth’s atmosphere needs MORE CO2, not less

      • Not only is there no need to get rid of CO2, the nonsense being peddled here (over and over again) wouldn’t do it anyway.

        Isn’t there a policy against pushing money making ventures here?

  28. Scratch a global warmy and you almost always find a population control freak .
    Grossly over stated global warming was a means to an end . Legalized human extermination through fuel poverty . You know, send them a price signal that insures the poor and weak are wiped out and while your at it make sure the 1% get more cake .
    If people like Al Gore were actually climate warriors they wouldn’t be lining their pockets and promoting policies to make them a lot more $green . Arrogant liberal hypocrites. Most of the public has had it with these self serving A holes . Thanks President Trump !

    • Not just population control freak, a control freak in general. Push them and they will eagerly tell you all the other things people shouldn’t be allowed to do.

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