The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere continues to increase and is already at a critical moment to mitigate the effects of climate change. Efforts are aimed at reducing emissions of this greenhouse gas and promoting (and protecting) carbon sinks.
Along these lines, a group of researchers from Tuskegee University have modified and discovered new materials based on living organisms that could eliminate the concentration of CO2 from the atmosphere.
According to their research, they maintain that the use of nanocellulose of natural origin may be the key to mitigating the concentration of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere in an efficient and cheap way.
Dr. Michael L. Curry, associate professor in the Department of Chemistry at Tuskegee University, and doctoral student Donald White have developed a technology based on materials from agricultural waste called nanocellulose. This nanocellulose is capable of capturing, adsorbing CO2, storing and releasing CO2 from the atmosphere without any external influence. It will be very interesting to see how this way of capturing CO2 actually works.
[box] Nanocellulose is a polymer made up of cellulose nanofibers. Among its applications we can find as a filter for any type of liquid including blood, manufacturing screens for electronic devices, as biofuel or to make paper. [/box]
This system would avoid changes in land management and forest use, as well as geoengineering techniques to remove CO2 from the atmosphere.
Nanocellulose is a material that can be found in abundance on this planet. Using this material to develop new technologies for CO2 capture and storage will push the boundaries of science towards the development of new systems that promote a cleaner, cooler atmosphere.
Plant-based materials to capture CO2
The nanocellulose-based process relies on using naturally occurring plant-based materials as filters to remove dangerous carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Furthermore, if this new technology is used as a means to reduce CO2, this natural material could be reused in the environment for remediation.
Climate change is already having a huge impact on our daily lives and the economy. Heat waves, cold waves or droughts caused by global warming can significantly alter agricultural production. Also, storms and floods have effects on human life.
CO2 levels will continue to rise unless something is done to counteract it. In April, a new record of 415 ppm of CO2 was reported, the highest concentration in the atmosphere, well above the historical limit of 350 ppm.