"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." Richard P. Feynman

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Please Take Our CO2 say the Germans!

The New York Times has the story of a Swedish-built coal-fired plant in Germany which is capturing 90% of CO2 emissions, running into problems disposing of them. It seems that the local residents (along with anyone with half a brain) thinks that the CO2 would leak from where it was deposited and do not approve of the proposals.

Vatenfall AB, which is owned by the Swedish government, has been frustrated by boisterous local opposition to its plans to pump CO2 more than a kilometer underground into porous rock formations. Unnerved by the popular uprising, politicians have stalled on passing needed regulations. And the delays have allowed the utility's competitors in the natural gas industry to buy up rare storage formations in Vattenfall's backyard.

The protests began last year. Residents are concerned that CO2, which causes suffocation at high concentrations, will leak from rock formations, despite assurances from geologists that escape is practically impossible. And there are other worries -- about stored CO2 turning groundwater acidic and forcing real estate prices to plunge.
And in coal-rich Brandenburg, some locals fear CO2 storage would encourage expanded surface mining, destroying more towns in a region environmentally devastated by communism and economically crippled by capitalism. They have launched demonstrations in churches and created Internet sites splayed with foreboding images of gas masks and bombs, fuses burning, buried in the soil.

One would think that prior to building the plant someone would have taken the time to organise somewhere for the CO2 but given the illogical approach to green-inspired energy overall it is not surprising!


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