Ocean-based CO2 sequestration using algae - India Renewable Energy Consulting – Solar, Biomass, Wind, Cleantech
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Ocean-based CO2 sequestration using algae Oceans cover about 70% earth.

And they have been playing a critical role in almost every aspect of our planet’s health – from temperature control to weather management and to yes, maintaining CO2 balance in the atmosphere.

The oceans absorb 2-3 billion tons of CO2 every year – 6-8% of the total annual anthropogenic CO2 emissions.

Given its vastness and its biodiversity, could the oceans sequester more?

One of the avenues for an even larger CO2 sequestration from oceans would be the enhanced growth of algae – both micro and macro algae. They consume about 1.8 Kg of oxygen for every 1 Kg of their biomass, and most species grow very fast. Given that there are well over 30,000 strains of microalgae alone, you should not be surprised to find some algae suited for every conceivable part of the earth or ocean (they even grow in the Arctic ice).

This mass-scale growing of algae in the oceans – has it not been thought of before? You bet it has been.

Through efforts called ocean fertilization, since 1980 scientists have tried to stimulate the growth of algae in oceans by fertilizing it with iron, but the results have been mixed ( see this – https://lnkd.in/gu9sYjzX ). Besides, scientists are – correctly – wary of any efforts to hack the complex ocean ecosystem without understanding the real short and long term ramifications.

All the same, given the potential the ocean holds to sequester (and perhaps also utilize) CO2 on scale, should more research be undertaken in this domain? Surely at least as much research and investments going into industrial carbon capture or direct air CO2 capture?

It appears to be a such a nice way of taking help from nature – or at least to check out if nature would be obliging enough..

Some useful links

https://bit.ly/3l1zwit Paul Lavery

https://bbc.in/2Yn14Gi BBC Isabelle Gerretsen

https://bit.ly/3B4Qcez World Resources Institute Katie Lebling , Eliza Northrop

https://rsc.li/39Wts4v Royal Society of Chemistry

See my LinkedIn post on this topic

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