“The CO2 problem is a waste management problem … If I were to dump my garbage in front of your house and you complained, I would say, ‘Now wait a minute. I’m 20% better than I was last year. I want a reward!’ … If you put it in this context, you see it immediately looks silly. The difference is, it really changes the way you think about the problem.”
Ross and Christophe are joined by Dr. Klaus Lackner, the director of ASU’s Center for Negative Carbon Emissions (CNCE) and professor at the School of Sustainable Engineering. The CNCE is known for advancing carbon management technologies to capture carbon dioxide directly from the air in an outdoor operating environment. Today Klaus explains how he conceived of the windmill-sized structures that could scrub CO2 from the air and how these towers prove to be a more efficient solution than planting trees.
Ross, Christophe and Klaus also discuss CO2 as a waste management issue, comparing the way society eventually addressed sewage with the current problem surrounding carbon emissions. Klaus offers his take on the feasibility of retrofitting coal plants for carbon capture, the politics of carbon sequestration, and the decreasing cost of carbon capture technology. Listen in to understand how putting a price on CO2 could balance our carbon budget and the role volunteers are likely to play in prompting government action.
[2:59] Klaus’ eureka moment around carbon sequestration
[7:22] The concept of a moisture swing
[8:53] Why trees aren’t an efficient method of sequestering carbon
[14:28] How viewing CO2 as a waste management problem would change the game
[20:46] Klaus’ work around diffused carbon capture
[22:33] Why Klaus is skeptical of the proposal to retrofit coal plants for carbon capture
[26:26] Small power plants vs. large power plants
[30:34] Klaus’ insight around the politics of carbon sequestration
[32:00] The role of volunteers in prompting government action
[33:53] How to foot the bill for carbon sequestration
[40:01] The alarming rate of increasing carbon emissions
[45:06] The decreasing cost of carbon sequestration
[50:11] Klaus’ take on the future of the air capture industry
Connect with Ross & Christophe
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