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After five years of living in the lunatic asylum we call Bush's America, nothing should surprise me anymore.  After all, we have people voting for a party that is hell-bent on:

  • Shipping good jobs overseas
  • Keeping us in a perpetutal war
  • Destroying the institutions that have made the middle class
  • Destroying our public lands
  • Shredding the Kyoto accords
  • Giving the gas and oil companies carte blanche

And that isn't even an exhaustive list.  No matter, no one has time to catalog all of the crimes the GOP and their corporate benefactors are foisting on the world.  After all, the list is so long, nothing should surprise me.  But even now, I can still be amazed.  Witness those fun-loving lads in the oil industry who have a new scheme cooking for you and me.

DOHA, Qatar--Tony Espie, storage technology manager for BP Exploration, believes one of the primary tools for solving global warming lies beneath our feet.

Storing carbon dioxide in underground caves that once held oil and gas is shaping up to be one of the more promising techniques for reducing the amount of greenhouse gases that get pumped into the atmosphere, he said during a presentation at the International Technology Petroleum Conference taking place here this week.

Yes, you read that correctly.  The oil companies have a plan to solve global warming.  They are going to put the CO2 emissions back underground.  Imagine my amazement at this plan!  

First, I am amazed that they are virtually admitting that there is global warming.  I thought for sure that Whiskey George told us the science says otherwise.

Second, this sounds like we're messing with something that's going to come back and bite us.  But then again, we're "eco-wackos" according to the Greed and Oil Party.  So you say, "Calee4, yer overreacting here.  Get a grip man, the oil companies are looking out for us."

Trials for the concept are already under way in Algeria and Canada. Commercial development could begin within the next five years. Ideally, storage facilities would keep carbon dioxide underground for at least 1,000 years and hopefully 10,000 or more.

Uh oh, that sounds kinda ominous there.  So they're already doing this?  Man, I hope nothing can go wrong.  It's just C02, right?  The stuff that's in your Perrier water, right?

Significant risks, of course, exist. A rupture in an underground cavern can lead to a bubble of carbon dioxide. If people were to walk through the bubble, they would probably die of suffocation, Espie said. That problem, however, is fairly localized. Sensors placed in the area can provide some warning.

A large earthquake could also create a fault that would let carbon dioxide escape over a broader area. "In that case, you'd probably have to take the CO2 out," he said.

Well, I'm glad I don't have to worry about earthquakes... oh wait, I forgot, I live in California.  Never mind.

If the gas escaped into a water supply, the result would be carbonated water, but health officials would be concerned about any deleterious chemical reactions.

Imagine that, Perrier coming out of your tap.  What will they think of next?

The biggest roadblock ultimately could be public acceptance of the idea. To that end, he suggested the industry share the data of these projects.

Administrative bodies also need to be created. Companies don't last 1,000 years, he said.

So the public gets a say in this?  How democratic of them.

Drink up!

Originally posted to Calee4nia on Mon Nov 21, 2005 at 10:50 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Story Link (4.00)

    We hold these truths to be self evident... All men are created equal...

    by Calee4nia on Mon Nov 21, 2005 at 10:48:05 PM PST

    •  Perfectly reasonable (none)
      The gas fields held that gas for hundreds of millions of years before we came to get it out. These fields are perfectly able to stora another gas in the same conditions.

      It is actually a decent idea to store CO2 and do something against global warming.

      Oil companies are exploring it (i) because they are forced to by regulations on emissions and (ii) because in some cases it can help produce more oil from some fields and thus pays for itself.

      Nothing ominous there.

      In the long run, we're all dead (Keynes)
      Read more on the European Tribune - bringing dKos to Europe

      by Jerome a Paris on Tue Nov 22, 2005 at 03:01:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Verrrry interesting. But nutz. (none)

    -6.88/-5.64 Right between Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama. Dudes! I am sooo in a like totally awsome place!

    by John West on Mon Nov 21, 2005 at 11:18:50 PM PST

  •  While we're at it, (none)
    let's just assume that our consumption of fossil fuels isn't sitting on a rapidly accelerating curve. Bury the invisible gases, and they're even easier to ignore!
  •  Why not just (none)
    nationalize the oil industry?

    If we're dumb. Then God is dumb. And maybe a little ugly on the side.

    by Ghost of Frank Zappa on Mon Nov 21, 2005 at 11:43:25 PM PST

  •  We're doing water injection AND (none)
    natural gas RE-injection to keep well pressures up (and oil production higher).

    Read up on the industry.  We only manage to get a fraction of the oil in ANY deposit out.  Once you start losing the natural pressure from the gas dissolved within the oil, the field dies.  You can try to force more oil out by injecting water to "puch" the oil towards wells but most oil is stuck in small pores within the rock.  It's NOT some big underground "lake".

    I expect injecting CO2 might also help re-pressurize wells (and wonder if that is the REAL motivation here) but do wonder about the long term.

    Seems smarter to leave the Carbon locked up as plants that produce O2.

  •  catastrophe (none)
    Storing gasses under rock seems a little leaky, not to mention dangerous

    nearly every one of the village's 1,000 residents was dead, including his parents, siblings, uncles and aunts. "I myself, I was crying, crying, crying," he says. It was August 21, 1986--the end of the world, or so Che believed at the time. All told, some 1,800 people perished around Lake Nyos....

    ...carbon dioxide from magma degassing deep under Lake Monoun had percolated up into the lake's bottom layers of water for years or centuries, creating a giant, hidden time bomb. The pent up gas dissolved in the water, suddenly had exploded, releasing a cloud of concentrated carbon dioxide.

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