Carbon Recycling: Mining the Air for Fuel
We recycle bottles, cans, and newspapers—why not carbon dioxide? Start-up companies and researchers are working on technology to put carbon right back into gas tanks.
Recycling carbon dioxide is a great deal more involved than setting out separate bins for glass, aluminum, and paper. But many scientists believe that it is not only worth the effort, but a crucial endeavor. The climate change threat to the planet is now so great, they argue, that any effort to address the problem will have to include so-called "carbon negative" technologies. That means actually sucking the greenhouse gas out of the atmosphere and doing something productive with it.
The idea of capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) from coal power plants or oil facilities and storing it underground has gotten plenty of attention. Several pilot projects are operating or under construction, although a major project in West Virginia was abandoned