Carbon Engineering and Harvard find way to convert CO2 to gasoline

Posted by  $  nickursis 5 months, 1 week ago to Science
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Hmmm, an Ayn Rand moment? A company comes up with a solution that is not a draconian control freak show by politicians?
SOURCE URL: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/07/carbon-engineering-and-harvard-find-way-to-convert-co2-to-gasoline.html


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  • Posted by evlwhtguy 5 months, 1 week ago
    I suspect that we will never hear about this once the government grant has been given to them. I cant tell you how many green technology plants I have seen over the last 10 years that went bankrupt after 18 to 24 months....about when the federal grant money runs out. I am not a physicist...but i am going to go out on a limb here and state that there is no free lunch. I think perhaps the law of conservation of energy will come in to play and they will discover that it will take more energy to convert Co2 in to hydrocarbon than you get out of the fuel. We certainly see this with alcohol fuel....IE: you expend more calories farming the corn, fertilizing it harvesting and distilling than you get out of the fuel. This is just another bullshit means of getting a grant out of our dumb ass politicians.
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  • Posted by CTYankee 5 months, 1 week ago
    Why to people believe this crap? Or are they the same people who actually check to see that the word 'gullible' is scheduled to be removed from the OED?
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      Again, I am not a physicist, so I don't understand all the chemistry, but it is all a carbon exchange process, the question is always one of energy. If it takes more than you get, it will go bust. But the one variale is efficient use of energy, rather than brute force, and I would point out that most epoxys make rock hard materials just by putting together 2 other groups of chemicals that react. So, maybe they have such a breakthrough? The basic science is set, it has been there for several years, but the energy cost was what dove the costs up. Maybe they have discovered the epoxy method.
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      • Posted by lrshultis 5 months, 1 week ago
        The $94 per metric ton is the cost of removing CO2 from the atmosphere. Then hydrogen must be produced by electrolysis of water or by breakdown of hydrocarbons. They are expecting to use sun and wind generated electricity to make the hydrogen by electrolysis. So, many other costs than removing CO2 from the atmosphere go into making gasoline from that metric ton of CO2.
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  • Posted by dark_star 5 months, 1 week ago
    Wow that's a deal! "We'd" save $500 per metric ton and it would only cost $100 per ton for this process....

    Let's see:
    First, the article conveniently left out how much fuel was created from each ton of recovered carbon. My guess is that it's not gallons of fuel per ton of carbon but tons of carbon per gallon of fuel.

    Second, from my quick Google searching, it seems that mankind produces 38.2 BILLION tons of carbon each year. And if you do the math, that equals a cost of 3.82 TRILLION dollars a YEAR to remove the "man-made" carbon from the atmosphere.

    What a deal!!
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      Being a skeptic is a skill any of us needs desperately, I did not find much in a search but did not have a lot of time to waste. The claims and "what is left out" is a valid concern, and is why I was not overly excited, as if it were efficient, it would become a mainstay and also would be immediately purchased by the government or oil companies to horde. But, you never know, Gates is a really rich guy and probably now is well connected to the back stage players, who may want it to succeed. They may need it to.
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  • Posted by Lucky 5 months, 1 week ago
    But the article says,
    'Carbon Engineering is seeking funding'.
    Usually, funding= government money.
    So, the way I read it is:
    Bill Gates wants a subsidy to make money.
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      I am sure BG will take whatever he can get, and the Liberals would toss it at him if he could prove conclusively it worked. I bet he has to foot the bill till then though.
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  • Posted by DrZarkov99 5 months, 1 week ago
    Raise algae instead, the conversion is faster, more efficient, and cheaper. Algae biofuel is reaching industrial scale, is an excellent substitute for diesel, and is funded by the oil companies. They're continuing to work on bringing the cost down, predicting it will reach petroleum level prices in the next decade.
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      good point doc, is there any comparisons to be found on what both can do I wonder?
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      • Posted by DrZarkov99 5 months, 1 week ago
        Given the lack of real detail on the direct CO2 conversion process, it's hard to make a comparison. My point was that the algae system has been in development for quite a while, and is the more mature technology. I was skeptical about the algae, given Pentagon testing for aircraft was done with $18/gal test batches ten years ago, but since then the production cost is approaching the $5/gal level, and that is a research production. Exxon Mobil anticipates they could reach a cost competitive level in less than ten years. The big attraction for them is that an algae production center is simpler to build than a refinery, with less regulation. They also have backing from the big auto makers, since algae-derived fuel is a zero carbon propellant, leading to continued production of internal combustion engine cars and trucks.
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  • Posted by  $  AJAshinoff 5 months, 1 week ago
    So let vehicles consume carbon, taking it away from the plants which feed on it which in turn lessens the O2 we need to breathe and, because of emissions and less foliage, creates more CO2 in the atmosphere?
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      I am not so sure that was the idea, I think the idea was to remove the "excess" CO2 that they all think will turn the world toasty (maybe AFTER the Grand Solar Minimum is done freezing it). I do agree with the idea that more CO2 is beneficial to plants, and disagree with the idea it is a greenhouse gas. No one I have seen yet shows that there is some bad point, in that the greenland cores have shown much larger levels that we have today, and there were no people to cause it, so there is some natural system in play that will balance it all out. That is what needs investigation.
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  • Posted by Owlsrayne 5 months ago
    At least the Canadian Gov't is wasting their money. not the US Gov't yet. It would be cheaper to plant trees to capture the carbon instead of a facility trying to remove from the air. What they're doing could cause a Butterfly Effect because it's not natural.
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  • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 5 months, 1 week ago
    [Serious sarcasm with a twist of truth.]

    I can just see it now....100 years from now environmentalist will be screaming: "Your Killing the Planet, your killing us and our food"; in what is sure to be called: The Carbon Crisis!

    Trees, plants, animals and humans will all be miniaturized versions of what we once used to be. We will all be living in mouse holes...We will need bionic legs to see the horizon and we all will be blamed for killing the Dinosaurs!

    Any Nephilim Remanence in the human gene pool will be all but wiped out!.

    Either way...these creatures are gona get their Carbon Tax!
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    • Posted by  $  allosaur 5 months, 1 week ago
      Mouse holes? Think it would be way cooler if humans lived under anthills.
      Me dino can see it now. A scout will come back from a food source such as a dead cockroach that can survive anything unaltered save for its own life span.
      A line line of diminutive humans shall form going both to and from to bring back pieces of cockroach.
      Of course, the best cockroach bits will be taken down to the "queen chamber" ruled by the hill's Animal Farm-esque more than equal elite betters.
      Oh, when shall we ever learn? When? When?
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    • Posted by  $  5 months, 1 week ago
      They will even if he does as he says. They want the carbon tax simply because it is an efficient way to loot, just place huge costs on things, someone will print enough money for it.
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  • Posted by CircuitGuy 5 months, 1 week ago
    I think something like this is coming one way or the other because there's such value in gasoline's energy density and how fast you can release the energy. As oil extraction becomes more expensive, there will be more profit in finding something else. It would be great if it also removes greenhouse gasses. I imagine separate processes: one to produce high-energy liquid and one to recapture the carbon we released that's now causing global warming. The big question is the energy source. I think it has to be nuclear.
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