Solution Phase 1:Stabilization


Stabilizing Global Carbon Dioxide Emissions

Currently, the annual global carbon dioxide (CO2) emission level is approximately 27 Gt of CO2, which contains approximately 8 Gt of pure carbon (Energy Information Administration 2009: Balat et al. 2005). By 2025, we will stabilize emissions at an annual global output of 35.85 Gt of CO2. Natural processes such as plants and the oceans absorb approximately 8.5 Gt of carbon dioxide per year. Therefore, by the end of this stage, an anthropogenic emissions level of 27.35 Gt of CO2 per year will contribute to the atmospheric concentration. This stabilization will be achieved primarily by enacting international policies, developing and implementing alternative and renewable energy resources, and reducing emissions of CO2 through increased industrial efficiency and decreased wasteful consumption.

A variety of international policies will be employed to stabilize CO2 emissions. An international cap-and-trade system for carbon will create a carbon market and put a price on emitted CO2. This will provide economic incentives for reducing emissions and will initiate penalties, monetary and operative, for industries with unjustifiably high levels of emissions. Other policies will be enacted that require improved energy and manufacturing efficiency for industries and will curb wasteful practices by the individual, corporate, and national consumer. All of these policies will provide economic incentives for private industries and individuals to reduce their emissions. Funding for these incentives will come in part from trimming unnecessary subsidies to the coal, gas, and oil sector as cheaper and more efficient renewable energy resources are increasingly employed.

Renewable energy technologies and resources will be used to fulfill the increasing demand for energy and will stabilize carbon emissions by producing the electricity and power generation that currently requires fossil fuel-burning power plants. The renewable energy technologies that will be implemented for electricity generation are tidal power, wind power, geothermal processes, and solar energy. Nuclear energy, a reliable and economically feasible method of power generation that can be applied using existing technology, practices, and infrastructure, will also be used. Nuclear power will assist in the transition from fossil fuel-burning power plants to sustainable, carbon-free, renewable energy generation. Further, biofuels will be used to reduce emissions from non point-sources. Much of the biomass that will be converted into biofuels will be carbon-sequestering algae grown in constructed bioreactors. Agroforestry, anti-deforestation, and reforestation projects will be implemented internationally to cheaply, effectively, and naturally sequester carbon. CO2 will also be utilized and sequestered starting in this phase using CO2-enhanced oil and natural gas recovery technology, forms of Oil and gas reservoir sequestration

During this phase, economic and scientific resources will be allocated to further research and develop the carbon capture and sequestration technologies that will be applied later in our plan. This includes further testing of the different sequestration methods, primarily saline aquifer sequestration (in cluding  seabed aquifer sequestration and terrestrial saline aquifer sequestration), and In situ mineral CO2 sequestration. This research and testing will develop more economically favorable and more efficient methods of applying sequestration technologies. Studies will also be performed to identify specific locations for sequestration. This period will also be used to organize, plan, and construct the infrastructure necessary to implement the later steps of the plan, such as pipeline transportation for super-critical CO2 transportation and pumping stations on land and on sea. Most of the critical infrastructure required for CO2 transportation and sequestration will be built in a twenty-five year time frame. Finally, cool roof technology, a form of geoengineering that reflects additional sunlight will be implemented.