Most of us are worried about increasing amounts of greenhouse gases in the air – and if you aren’t yet concerned about this, you should be. However, now there is a reason for hope: researchers from the Los Alamos National Laboratory have just announced a groundbreaking new project called Green Freedom, which will extract CO2 from the air and convert it into fuel to power cars and airplanes. Talk about killing two birds with one stone! Not only will this remove some of the greenhouse gas currently in our atmosphere, but it will prevent future CO2 from being added to our air, by providing a new renewable form of fuel to power our lives.
Green Freedom would provide a large-scale production method for carbon-neutral, sulfur-free fuels and organic chemicals from air and water. The technology essentially extracts carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and, using a form of electrochemical separation, turns it into fuel. Their goal is to create a fuel that will work with existing vehicle and aircraft infrastructure.
As for the catch, the program would rely on large cooling towers and nuclear power plants from which the CO2 would be gathered. Green Freedom would use existing plants with carbon-capture equipment, so instead of constructing new facilities, the primary environmental impact would be limited to the footprint of the plant alone.
Whether or not this concept is viable remains to be seen. Hopefully we will learn all the details of this technology soon. Even so, it is exciting to add another technology to the growing list of alternative energy sources.
+Los Alamos National Laboratories’ Green Freedom