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Utopia Talk / Politics / decarbonisation
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 05:51:25
"Climate control improves the value of a home. Again, as a supplement to natural gas."

That's a perfectly reasonable assumption trumped it by aesthetics. People hate electric hobbs, and nobodies figured out a way of insulating Victorian buildings in a way that isn't ugly; and this has a huge impact.

"1.8 million council households then. Lets call that the low threshold measure."
Predominantly, this has/is being done already.

"Cooling-compressing-cooling-compressing is energy demanding. So you want to to it for both the crack and the combustion emissions now?"

The crack emissions need some cooling, but only to ambient - even at ambient temperatures H2 separates from CO2 trivially. You can mix that co2 in with the combustion products. It's no different from any other CCS scheme you'd run for a gas plant.

"And yepp, you would be forcing people to convert to H2."
Yes. But we've done this before when converting from town gas to natural gas. It's not trivial but it's not hard. Over a 15 year period eminently doable, particularly if you roll out dual fuel boilers and hobs. It will be annoying, but the change won't be big. You can also sub the energy.

"You will not have enough used lithium batteries domestically because you are doing everything back-assed backwards. But there is always the international market."

*Looks around* so we are targeting 2035 which is what, one and a half half-lives of an electric vehicle away? And presumably we are not the only people wanting electricity storage. You are looking at what, maybe half the storage capacity of vehicles *currently* on the road? I have a 10 year old hybrid and I think it's good for another 5 years at least, still does great fuel efficiency.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 06:14:51
2% of Norway's carbon emissions are from compressing and cooling natural gas at a single location in Norway.

"Some cooling" is from 940 C to 24 C.

Batteries need swapping after 6-10 years, cars after 12-20 years.

50 kwh per battery pack after reconditioning. The average household uses 10 kwh electricity per day.

I will give you that you might possibly convert Leeds to accepting H2. I wonder how much it will cost to convert back to natural gas. Probably not that much and it could add some H2 into its natural gas mix after going back.

There will surely be hydrogen trucks that can deliver to the pipe system from decentralized sources.
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 06:50:38
Yeah but Ng boiling point is -160 Vs CO2 at -80.

"Some cooling" from 940 C to 24 C - that's essentially free. It's a nuclear plant site, there will be cooling towers and a heat sink (river, sea).

Getting hydrogen out of co2 won't require active cooling. Removing co2 (mixed combustion product and co2, H2O from steam reforming) requires active cooling to -80 (at which point the co2 liquifies out), unless there are more efficient chemical scrubbing measures). Liquidation point of natural gas is -160 which requires far more active cooling and more energy.

"Batteries need swapping after 6-10 years"
My hybrid is still doing great at 11!
"Cars after 12-20 years."
So yeah, basically we are looking at half the nominal storage capacity of whatever is on the road now, plus half whatever comes into the market in the ten years (assuming no cannibalisation of the market by people buying reconditioned batteries for their cars).

I don't think that's going to be enough!

Why convert back to natural gas? If fed with biologically sourced methane, this is carbon negative. Just what the doctor ordered.

Also converting back is pretty easy if your legacy infrastructure (particularly domestic kit) is dual use anyway. It's even more similar to the conversion from town gas to natural gas.

Also you have
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 08:35:05
Seb
Half the energy needed for "liquififying out" is phase shift from vapour to liquid (I am simplifying as the actual compression-cooling-expansion is done to the cooling medium).

2% of Norway's CO2 emissions are from a single facility doing that kind of stuff.

The reasons batteries need to be swapped out is lowered energy density over time. It does not really apply to hybrids, nor do many hybrids have battery packs large enough to be interesting.

If by basically, you mean "not the wrong order of magnitude", then sure. 2/3ds of the capacity of what is on the road in 5 years would actually be correct. So not a larger number by an order of magnitude, but close.

I was using natural gas as a generic term. Any gas not produced by the method you are suggesting.

I trust Leeds is actually designing its pipes for dual use from the go. It does not anything near enough H2 feedstock anyway, so it probably is.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 09:53:50
About 1.2 million refurbished 50 kwh commulative in 2035. For Norway, with some assumptions about trends. It would be higher with official government goals.

Incidentally, Norway is not subsidising electric car role out. It is taking advantage of high taxes on vehicles and giving excemptions to those taxes.
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 11:33:14
Jergul:

Not really sure what your point is - liquifying NG isn't a great benchmark for CO2. The temperature reduction required is much greater for NG. Dry ice sells for a few cents a kilo in bulk which gives you an idea of costs.

The extra precision doesn't help - it's immediately obvious that you are looking at way to small a number.

As mentioned, and linked to a couple of time, mains are already dual use compatible. You do need to up the pressure and increase the storage. But the lines are fine.
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 11:35:07
"Incidentally, Norway is not subsidising electric car role out. It is taking advantage of high taxes on vehicles and giving excemptions to those taxes."

A tax rebate isn't a subsidy? So VAT reduction on fossil fuel wouldn't be a subsidising fossil fuel?
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 11:49:04
There are about 10k pure electric vehicles registered a yearthe UK, so say that doubles in the next 5 years. That would give a stock of around 150k pure electric vehicles. Average capacity though is more like 30kwh

About 2.7 GWh. Assuming no cannibalisation.
It's the same as our pump storage capacity, which is already quickly saturated during oversupply.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 11:53:40
Seb
My point was that the energy requirement is not much greater. 50% of the energy costs is to liquify. The other 50% is cooling vapour.

Your benchmark price using the dry ice example is 1000 £ per ton retail, food grade, excluding taxes. Want to try again?

1.2 million x50 kwh is enough to cover all household electrical use. Or 50 Gwh capacity.

How much were you planing on overproducing anyway?

By what margin were you imagining the UK would be overproducing electricity?

And also, you can still store electricy in Norway. Sell it and ship it by cable. Norway will save its resevoirs for ahem a rainy day.

They are likely dual use. The reason I am hedging is because it would be better for hydrogen suppliers if there were concrete barriers to using natural gas. Since we are ultimately dealing with crony capitalism, then it is reasonable to expect technical barriers to be put in place alongside financial ones.

Norwegian taxes on vehicle purchases and use are punitively high. So it would not be correct to say that not being subject to the regime is a subsidy.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 11:59:44
Seb
Norway's electric vehicle park increased by 40% last year. But sure, you may have to import used batteries from Norway. We don't need them.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 12:02:48
So in sum. You keep your pumped storage, you use your own used batteries, you import more used batteries, and you export whatever goes above the balance to Norway.

Its more a balancing game than anything else. You want enough storage for 90% of overproduction, and have something to do with the last 10% of overproduction. The best alternative for that is export.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 12:06:16
Enough storage to cover any overproduction 90% of the time*
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 16:51:23
Jergul:

Got a lot to do so I've only got as far as this point - so hold that thought until tomorrow.


Why food grade? Implies all sorts of additional costs, plus value based pricing!

I was able to get industrial grade stuff for cents per kilo back in the day, though tbf that was now long ago that inflation would be an issue.

The price of production is more like below 10$ a tonne.

"Right now, the end user price of pure CO2 is about 8 cents per pound (2014)"

http://www...faction-at-its-keyes-ca-plant/

And this study puts ann estimated cost of under £5 a tonne.

http://www.google.com/url?q=https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/761762/BEIS_Shipping_CO2.pdf&sa=U&ved=2ahUKEwjft4_-qLvnAhXRQkEAHRnfDOoQFjADegQIAxAB&usg=AOvVaw1jBloZZSD0xR2qaXncpgX0

Seb
Member
Wed Feb 05 16:52:31
I appreciate when I said bulk, I probably should have been clearer: wholesale direct from the industrial manufacturer.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 21:16:10
Seb
Turns out CO2 production is food grade by default. Processes demand high purity.

Energy is the main input factor for liquifying CO2.

Ranging from 83 to 100 kwh per ton CO2

A ton of CH4 gives 44:14=3,1 tons of CO2

or 286 kwh.

Capturing the 57 kg CO2 used to produce 286 kwh along with 343 kg of nitrogen, then feeding in a ton of CO2, then destilling by liquification gives 1,4 tons of gases to liquify instead of 1 ton initially.

http://iop...088/1755-1315/167/1/012031/pdf

==================

13 600 kwh becomes 9000 kwh (H2 has less energy than CH4) becomes 8500 kwh (after capturing and liquifying the H2 and CO2).

You now have 67.5% of the energy that you started off with.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 05 21:26:09
Add to it a multiplier of 0.7 for steam reforming efficiency and you get 47,25% assuming nuclear power is used. Its worse if you are using gas turbines as you would generate more CO2 to capture.

Dukhat
Member
Wed Feb 05 22:00:09
The next step is not just nuclear. Renewables often have excess energy in the grid that has no use right now. If we build renewable infrastructure that it can address our peak energy demands at night, then there will be plenty of spare capacity during the day to use for carbon-sequestration or other environmentally-friendly economic activities.
smart dude
Member
Wed Feb 05 23:29:17
Which asshole broke this thread? Oh, Seb, with his stupidly large link. Whatever happened to miniurl?
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 06 01:38:12
Dukhat
I think Seb and I have discussed our way to thinking that new nuclear energy does not have a future in the UK.

It was expensive to begin with and inflation per year since the 80s has been estimated at 5%.

New nuclear power would not be an example of green energy. It would be an example of crony capitalism and politicians' desire to see their names engraved on large projects, and not mundane, practical ones.
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 06 01:38:48
Thats cost inflation for nuclear builds.
Seb
Member
Thu Feb 06 02:16:04
I'll check the calculations later, but yeah of course you'll end up with less energy than if you just burned the gas.

Food grade certainly isn't the same as industrial grade. It's milled to pelets, kept clean etc. and very likely sold at value based prices. Plus Certs and standards end to end. Sure it's probably very similar in practice, but not in law.
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 06 02:54:39
Seb
It is entirely possible to degrade food quality CO2 to industrial grade. And of course you need certification. But CO2 produced that way is food quality as a conscequence of the production method.

You currently have exactly 4 facilities that produce CO2. 3 produce fertilizer, one produces industrial metanol. There might actually be room for 6 if CO2 supply security is weighted heavily.
Seb
Member
Thu Feb 06 11:29:48

The question you should ask yourself is what do you need to do to keep dry ice good quality from plant to end user, and what costs does that create. Including constraints on the plant itself.

Anyway I think we are in agreement that $1000 a tonne is not the cost of manufacturing dry ice, by an order of magnitude.
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 06 11:53:11
I think we can agree that when you say you bought dry ice for a few pennies a kg, then it was reasonable to check retail prices. The quote I found was for 27 £ for 2.5 kg.

Be less sloppy with your examples.

I do not in other words need to ask myself that question as I checked the actual energy requirements instead.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 05:39:41
http://www...ethane-to-fight-climate-change
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 05:50:27
Posted for a calculation later. Assuming a 10% reduction in bovine methane production, how does biochar impact on CO2 equivalent emissions?

I rather suspect the number will be sexy.
Sam Adams
Member
Fri Feb 07 10:33:46
"Seb
Member Thu Feb 06 02:16:04
I'll check the calculations later, "


Rofl. Thats funny.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 11:26:50
200 grams methane a day .05 = 15 grams
5% carbon of 10 kg feed = 500 grams

0,015x84 to get CO2 equivalent = 1,25 kg
0,5x3,5 to get CO2 equivalent = 1,75 kg
= 3kg/day/cow

10 000 000 cattle in UK, 365 days a year
=10 950 000 tons *0,7 (biochar is not pure carbon)
= 7,765 million tons CO2 averted/year
(Not exact, I was lazy and the 0,7 is a variable anyway)

Silage method for calculating total biochar demand
65 000 000 tons *0,05 = 3,25 million tons
= 9,75 million tons*0,7
= 6,825 million tons CO2 averted per year

The methods are not directly comparable but suggests market volume. Lets say 5 million tons biochar.

Above gives about 1.5 million tons of Leeds quality natural gas (with a significant H2 content) and rather coincidentally also matches Leed's natural gas demand.

It is carbon neutral.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 11:30:07
Ach, I see. I used the wrong basis. H2, CH4 from pyrolysis is based on feedstock, not biochar. So about 5 tons, or 3 times Leeds natural gas demand (10% of the UK total demand).
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 11:59:49
So in total, if biochar feedstock is used as replacement for 10% of natural gas all of biochar is used as a supplement to various farm creatures:

6 million tons CO2 by replacing drilled natural gas used.

5 million tons CO2 by reducing methane production by farm animals and sequestering carbon in the top soil.

A 2.5% reduction in total UK CO2 emissions.

Ballpark numbers. Sounds about right.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 07 14:35:02
Another number. The biochar feedstock involved is 20% of UK silage volume. So 13 million tons.

Its the equivalent of what about 35 locomotives could lug about in a year (I scaled up the a 8 million ton Mendip rail contract for 19 locomotives)
jergul
large member
Sat Feb 08 04:41:51
Its important to remember that we are not actually trying to get rid of all CO2 emissions. Globally, we want to reduce them by 67%. Global sinks will take care of the rest.

To link this all together, lets assume that agricultural waste (husks and stuff) is the feedstock for biochar.

Then lets assuming that agricultural fertilzer to make husks and stuff comes from cracking natural gas.

1 kg CH4 -> 3,75kg CO(NH2)2
3,75kg CO(NH2)2 -> 1,87 kg Nitrogen
50% of nitrogen biologically available
= 0,94 kg.

10 kg nitrogen increases feedstock by 200 kg
0,94 kg nitrogen increases feedstock by 18,75 kg

Fraction of feedstock used for other purposes (feeding people) has been deducted.

28% of feedstock becomes carbon in biochar
.28*18,75 kg = 5,25 kg
1 kg of CH4 gives 3.1 kg CO2

Conclusion: cracking natural gas is a carbon sink if cracking produces fertilizer when agricultural residue is used to produce biochar for sequestration.

I think I got that right.
jergul
large member
Sat Feb 08 04:50:06
I got it more or less right, but coincidentally so. Feedstock by weight should be reduced because we need to account for reducing feedstock water content to 20%.

We also need to account for 12 kg C sequestered is the equivalent of 44 kg CO2.

I guess I just ran out of place on the back of my napkin :D.
jergul
large member
Sat Feb 08 05:30:29
A 20% reduction for drying from 25% to 20% (feedstock has around 25% moisture at harvest)

So, 5,25*.8 = 4.2 kg C
4.2kg*3,67 = 15,4 kg CO2

Emitting 3.1 kg CO2 sequesters 15,4 kg CO2 by this method.
jergul
large member
Sat Feb 08 05:43:13
So for carbon neutrality, a facility cracking CH4 to produce fertilizer should simply mix in biochar in its fertilizer product.

15,4:4.2 = 3,67 kg biochar per 3,75 kg urea.

Or 60 kg of the mix per hectar fertilized.
jergul
large member
Sat Feb 08 22:37:03
The thing about cracking natural gas for fertilizer is that it is suited for batch production. Fertilizer demand is highly seasonable.

A good estimate might be that a cracking facility feeds fertilizer production 4 months a year and feeds something else 7 months of the year (+1 month down-time for *stuff*).

I suspect a desire to batch produce fertilizer is the actual industrial motive for hydrogen in Leeds. The things we learn looking at things.

I am fast approaching a viable plan because it ends with consumers taking personal responsibility for sustainable development by drinking more beer.

Beer is the solution! We always knew it, we are now close to proving it.
Seb
Member
Sun Feb 09 16:21:15
Christ, hold that thought I say, and half a thread pops up.

Right, deadline cleared and kids birthdays taken care of, I'll catchup tomorrow.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 10 16:20:32
Jerugl:

"I think we can agree that when you say you bought dry ice for a few pennies a kg, then it was reasonable to check retail prices. The quote I found was for 27 £ for 2.5 kg."

And it being wildly different from the price I bought at, did you stop to consider it might not have been retail prices?

To the subject at hand - ok, for the flue gasses you can simply bubble through a solvent that releases CO2 on heating, that's the current CO2 scrubbing schema - you don't need to cool the nitrogen.

We've established it can be made for pennies at least, I hope!

"You now have 67.5% of the energy that you started off with."

Well, yes, that is the idea though: we expend energy in order not to have CO2 going into the atmosphere.

Your calculations have an error in them. Steam reforming produces 4 moles of hydrogen gas for each mole of CH4.
The energy of combustion of hydrogen is 286kj/mol and methane is 810kj/mol - so each 810kj/mol that would have been released on combustion in a domestic boiler results in 1144kj of potential energy in hydrogen going off to a boiler instead.
i.e. some of the energy consumed in the endothermic steam reforming process is going into hydrogen bonds that will be released in domestic boilers instead.

But yes, you will get less energy out overall than if you just burned the methane, but then, that's the point. We are forgoing some of that fossilized energy in order to avoid global warming.

RE your following posts, can you summarize in a couple of sentences what the proposal is? It's not immediately clear.

Seb
Member
Mon Feb 10 16:20:32
Jerugl:

"I think we can agree that when you say you bought dry ice for a few pennies a kg, then it was reasonable to check retail prices. The quote I found was for 27 £ for 2.5 kg."

And it being wildly different from the price I bought at, did you stop to consider it might not have been retail prices?

To the subject at hand - ok, for the flue gasses you can simply bubble through a solvent that releases CO2 on heating, that's the current CO2 scrubbing schema - you don't need to cool the nitrogen.

We've established it can be made for pennies at least, I hope!

"You now have 67.5% of the energy that you started off with."

Well, yes, that is the idea though: we expend energy in order not to have CO2 going into the atmosphere.

Your calculations have an error in them. Steam reforming produces 4 moles of hydrogen gas for each mole of CH4.
The energy of combustion of hydrogen is 286kj/mol and methane is 810kj/mol - so each 810kj/mol that would have been released on combustion in a domestic boiler results in 1144kj of potential energy in hydrogen going off to a boiler instead.
i.e. some of the energy consumed in the endothermic steam reforming process is going into hydrogen bonds that will be released in domestic boilers instead.

But yes, you will get less energy out overall than if you just burned the methane, but then, that's the point. We are forgoing some of that fossilized energy in order to avoid global warming.

RE your following posts, can you summarize in a couple of sentences what the proposal is? It's not immediately clear.

jergul
large member
Mon Feb 10 16:50:41
Seb
What is the best thing to do with cracked natural gas?
Seb
That was the rato I was using. I just rounded

1. Make plastic
2. Make fertilizer
...
99. Make hydrogen

Or

Make fertilizer in batches because the product is seasonal. Make hydrogen in the 7-9 month off-season.

What is the best way to "permanently" sink CO2?

Answer: Sink it in the form of carbon in biochar mixed in animal feed and fertilizer.

The only reason not to just pump biochar out to sea is that it has high soil remediation qualities at almost any quantities.

Finally, What to do with CO2 produced from cracking under the assumption that it is inherently valuable?

I am still exploring that thought.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 10 16:51:22
Seb
What is the best thing to do with cracked natural gas?

1. Make plastic
2. Make fertilizer
...
99. Make hydrogen

Or

Make fertilizer in batches because the product is seasonal. Make hydrogen in the 7-9 month off-season.

What is the best way to "permanently" sink CO2?

Answer: Sink it in the form of carbon in biochar mixed in animal feed and fertilizer.

The only reason not to just pump biochar out to sea is that it has high soil remediation qualities at almost any quantities.

Finally, What to do with CO2 produced from cracking under the assumption that it is inherently valuable?

I am still exploring that thought.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 10 17:01:37
Jergul:

People still need to heat their houses - so the fact you have found some way to optimise emissions reduction in another process doesn't eliminate that need.

"What is the best way to "permanently" sink CO2?"
Depends. Turning it into Biochar takes energy.

What it boils down to is you have a bunch of energy rich minerals that represent concentrated sources of organics that you can cheaply get energy out of by combustion, or cheaply turn into other organic chemicals.

If you want to get the energy out in a way that doesn't emit CO2, then you need to store the CO2. You can't really reduce the CO2 to solid carbon as that takes more energy than burning it releases, so you have to store it as CO2. Failing that, don't burn it. But then you have the problem of heating peoples homes and cooking. Using syngas from biological materials has problems (that would be better made into biochar!) with energy density, pulling CO2 out of the water and reforming it into methane is energy negative - so you still have the "where is the energy going to come from" problem.

Seb
Member
Mon Feb 10 17:02:23
There are some uses for concentrated CO2. You can use it to boost plant growth, but you'd only realistically consume a fraction of what you produced.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 10 17:08:36
Only a fraction because you are limited to the energy density of solar and the efficiency of photosynthesis.

That's why I like tidal lagoons colocated with our proposed power stations. The tidal lagoons act as pump storage, and you can float tubes full of algae as a means to turn that concentrated CO2 into biological material.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 10 18:00:02
It does not matter what the feedstock for biochar is. If algae makes sense, then sure. Though I suspect the best candidate for on site production is that panflute weed.

You do not need an external energy source to covert feedstock to biochar. Gassification from pyrolysis is significantly more than enough to fuel it.

Ultimately, the energy source for biochar feedstock is sunlight.

900 ppm gives about 30% faster growth.

The economics are better if you batch produce fertilizer. It uses H2 and processes it a bit further.

I rather suspect that lies at the root of this H2 idea in the first place.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 10 18:00:08
It does not matter what the feedstock for biochar is. If algae makes sense, then sure. Though I suspect the best candidate for on site production is that panflute weed.

You do not need an external energy source to covert feedstock to biochar. Gassification from pyrolysis is significantly more than enough to fuel it.

Ultimately, the energy source for biochar feedstock is sunlight.

900 ppm gives about 30% faster growth.

The economics are better if you batch produce fertilizer. It uses H2 and processes it a bit further.

I rather suspect that lies at the root of this H2 idea in the first place.
Seb
Member
Tue Feb 11 01:48:58
The benefit of the algae is you can run the system in a way that automates the harvest of biological material. But it might be worth the harvesting costs if you can get better sink rates. Depends what you are trying to do. I reckon you want to convert some of the carbon in Ng into chemicals feedstock.
jergul
large member
Tue Feb 11 04:00:52
Take 1100 kwh sunlight m2 and assume 15% efficiency in conversion from light to algae.

Greenhouses with high automation cost about 50 £ a year per M2. As a placeholder for algae in pipe systems.

I don't think the numbers add up even within orders of magnitude if you set the painthreshold at 92 £ mjh (nuclear power strike price).
Seb
Member
Tue Feb 11 06:07:11
That's a poor benchmark.

We are talking plastic piping through which water with nutrients, algae and CO2 are circulated.

The automation is filtration of the algae at the end.

If that costs £50 a square metre (£50 for 10 meters of tube) I'll eat my hat.

The point is to capture (some fraction) of the organic from the co2, given we have it concentrated. Either to make liquid fuels or feedstock for chemical industry, or even biochar (though I'd just do that using forestry and mobile pyrolysis kilns).

The rest of the co2 goes into pipelines and old gas wells.

jergul
large member
Tue Feb 11 07:01:19
Seb
You can probably find estimates of what algae production actually costs, but I suspect it will be within an order of magnitude of 50 pounds per M2 for a facility.

It does not matter if the solar energy captured is 5 or 500 times more expensive that what solar panels cost per m2kwh.

The point is actually just to increase yield. Which concentrated CO2 does. It is otherwise indifferent where CO2 comes from.
Seb
Member
Tue Feb 11 12:06:38
That's an odd way to look at it - you've mined this energy rich gas, striped out the carbon which now needs to be safely stored. If you can find a way to use some of it, yay. Producing biologically sourced hydrocarbon materials is one use for the co2.
jergul
large member
Tue Feb 11 14:06:08
If that can be done relatively inexpensively, then sure.
jergul
large member
Tue Feb 11 14:19:26
Vast woodland trust projects on public and subsized for privat land might be the the way forward.

Take the 30% (or whatever) yield increase from CO2.

Nurse biodiverse saplings at scale for projects fully or partially funded by the woodland trust.

1000 hectares or so in controlled environments would be fine (thats about the scale of Alberta, Canada's greenhouse tree nurseries for reforesting saplings).

500 million a year in greenhouse revenue would be about break even.

http://www...nt-trees/large-scale-planting/
jergul
large member
Tue Feb 11 14:28:20
Treeporn. I had the check what was on offer. I love Rowan. Easy as hell to harvest, cut and split. It offers the same energy density as oak. Best of all, it regrows from its root system if you cut down mildly selectively.

This is not an industrial scale suggestion. Just me and my preferances personally.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 05:36:06
The point is - you need new markets for CO2.

http://www...duction_container-seedling.pdf

I wonder what full carbon compensation would look like if analysed as a closed system.
Seb
Member
Wed Feb 12 06:13:36
Ooh I like that: sappling factories for reforesting. Also hydroponics farms etc. Challenge is some of that ends up back into the atmosphere so the sink rate needs to be computed carefully. Cryodystilation of air already produces a lot of co2, but I'm fairly sure this would swamp it. The question is whether we already have more concentrated co2 than we know what to do with or not.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 07:51:43
Start off with manufactured peat (fertilizer+biochar+sand or whatever) as feedstock for sappling manufacture.

Produce sapplings in a CO2 rich, controlled environment (which doubles as pest and infestation control). Some CO2 will also be locked in the biochar for slow release later in an ecosystem that thrives on a bit of extra CO2.

Prepare bespoken areas with nutrients and biochar. Plant trees in a biodiverse way.

Calculate commulative CO2 sunk into growing forest. Assume partial harvest in year 40 (leave the slow growth trees planted earlier)

I think this is something worth spending a few billion pound of public money a year on.

The industrial perspective is that it is simply producing various sapplings in a way specified by contract. It gets 50 quid m2/year to do that. It can additionally offwrite whatever CO2 it does catch in sapplings+fertilizer mix from its net emission totals.

Woodland trust manages all of this. The total CO2 reduction goes towards national goals and is not monetized.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 07:55:24
CO2 to decrease sappling mortality is actually a pretty powerful argument. Most things that fuck up sapplings are poisoned in a rich CO2 atmosphere.

Its important for mass scale production. You do not want infections and infestations to spread everywhere from a super sappling factory.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 16:57:34
15,000 kg (33,000 lbs) per hectare per year divided by 600 plantation trees per hectare, which results in an average of 25 kg (55 lbs) of carbon sequestered per tree per year.
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 18:30:47

"900 ppm gives about 30% faster growth. "

But but but co2 is bad!
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 18:30:55
Lol
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 18:46:53
Sammy, if more is better, then why not mosey down to the garage, close the door and start the engine for a nice pristine CO2 bath?
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 18:48:58
Don't do that btw. It would kill you.
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 18:54:17
Because 15000 is not 900.

Note im not sure i want to hit 900, but our planet is almost certainly better off at 500ppm that it is at 280ppm.
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 18:57:55
If less is better why not go to space without spacesuit?
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 19:01:21
Also tack on another 0 to 15k above.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 12 19:02:53
The 900 was actually supposed to be 9000.

We are talking about trying to find good uses for CO2.

Even beer would be pretty lame without CO2.
Sam Adams
Member
Wed Feb 12 19:09:56
Feeding plants is a pretty good use.
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 13 09:39:34
I am quite taken with the thought of woodland trust being the driver for a carbon storage industry.

I wonder how quickly it could scale up (it currently has a 50 million pound budget).
seb
Member
Fri Feb 14 00:28:18
Why the woodland trust Vs forestry commission?
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 03:24:12
A high level of public engagement. I am not sure what department the funding should initially sort under (giving the woodland trust its own billion pound budget directly on UKs budget seems odd).

A tree adds 25 kg of carbon a year. 600 trees per hectar. 32 year productive sequestration period for fast growing trees with fertilizer (40 without).

The key to the venture is then harvesting (selectively or not depending on type of forest created), then taking some energy out in the form of biogas and bio oil, then depositing the rest as bio char in the topsoil. Alternatively as manufactured wood in construction without the pyrolysis.

Wetlands and hedges are the best carbon sink type for biochar deposits at scale.

We could dream of rebuilding temperate rainforests (your climate suggest you did have them at some point in prehistory). That takes 800 years naturally. It could probably be done in 200 with correct forestry management techniques.

Ultimately, topsoil is the deposit area. A lot of the CO2 in the atmosphere came from there originally (also in preindustrial times). It can accept almost unlimited amounts of carbon. Think peat marches drained and used for farming. Great soil quality, with a carbon content high enough that people used to burn it for heating instead of wood or coal. Probably still do in some green projects.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 04:05:46
Replanting oak groves in accessible public parks would be huge showpiece things, but you would really want to pump up the carbon level in the topsoil before planting the oaktrees. Treated topsoil to 4 m depth per hectar = 10 000 tons of carbon. Then add whatever for trees.

For illustrative purposes on exactly how much carbon we can put back into the ground with remediative effect (adding more would at some point just turn to ground into a coalfield).
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 04:07:53
Is that right? 25kg per M3 40 000 M3 per hectar. 10 000 000 kg per hectar. 10 000 tons per hectar. Seems right.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 04:13:22
Ah, I got it. *0,28 for actual carbon content is biochar. *44/12 for CO2 equivalent.
asdasdfasdfasdfasdfa
Member
Fri Feb 14 04:35:53
http://www...th-s-hottest-january-on-record


February 13, 2020

In the span of 141 years of climate records, there has never been a warmer January than last month, according to scientists at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.


The January global land and ocean surface temperature was the highest on record at 2.05 degrees F (1.14 degrees C) above the 20th-century average. This surpassed the record set in January 2016 by 0.04 of a degree F (0.02 of a degree C).

The four warmest Januaries documented in the climate record have occurred since 2016; the 10 warmest have all occurred since 2002.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 05:50:43
The same hectar would contain about 600 tons of carbon in the form of trees after 40 years of growing (more if you include underbrush and smaller stuff) This for 600 trees per hectar.

Say 4 times more carbon in the topsoil sounds about right.

It sort of does illustrate that treeplanting without first doing soil remediation wastes a lot of land.

About 1 million tons of carbon is available in the UK per year (in the form of various things). Enough for 100 hectars of fully primed land.

http://nat...nds,-lakes-and-rivers/wetlands

I would start there. Dredge, mix, then create hedgerow barriers with massive carbon and nutrient content to protect the dredged water way. Mixing the nutrient rich dredge with carbon locks the nutrients for slow release as plants require it.

Lots of socio-economic benefits follow.

That facility of ours would probably want to produce 500 000 seedlings a year (land requirement is 2 hectars for that).

We can certainly lower the depth of soil preparation from 4 to 2 meters, but there is no getting around biochar being the limiting factor for optimal land use.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 06:02:06
The cracking facility will in other words want a feedstock for biochar production. This would directly lower the carbon intensity of cracking as pyrolysis oil and gas could be feed into cracking process and replace some natural gas.
Seb
Member
Fri Feb 14 11:45:23
Woodland trust as a private charity Vs Forrestry commission as a non ministerial govt dept with exactly this remit... seems odd but hey ho.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 12:37:27
Lets just say someone responsible.

Policywise, the best way forward is to require that cracked H2 has a green component. For example 10% of the feedstream for cracking has to be the byproduct from biochar.

The process that coverts biomass to biochar is incidentally a form of cracking if you view it from a gas/liquid perspective. So a related field to natural gas cracking.

"In summary, higher temperature pyrolysis not only shifted the energy contribution from biochar in favour of the gas and liquid co‐products but also led to increased stable‐C yields. Therefore, increasing the severity of pyrolysis, at least within the limits investigated, increased the energy value of the pyrolysis gas and liquid fractions, without sacrificing the carbon sequestration potential of biochar. This is an important finding; however, a full life cycle analysis is needed to truly understand all its complex implications. This study presents an important step towards this understanding"

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/gcbb.12137

Just as a footnote. CO is a valuable feedstock to any energy demanding process. CO->CO2.

jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 18:25:58
Its actually pretty elegant. IF the UK mandates that a 10% biogas/fuel mix must be added to the feedstock of all facilities cracking natural gas, then other good things follow automatically.

The facility does produce CO2
This gives a competative advantage in growing biomass.

The facility does produce thermal waste heat.
This does give a competative advantage in growing biomass and in biochar production.

Assuming colocation with LNG, then LNG vapourization would give refrigeration capacity for seedling hardening.

The Forestry Commission role would be as the provider of seedlings and biochar for projects subsidised and specified by the Commission

This creates demand (a huge customer of last resort) for both seedlings and biochar.

It also gives meaning to cracking natural gas for H2 production. It turns a suboptimal idea with lots of uncertainties (we have been handwaving away the difficulties in actually squestering CO2 in permanent resevoirs) into a driving engine of CO2 management with significantly improved efficiency.

I think I will scale a plant. Leeds suggests the UK will need 400 cracking facilities. Lets scale one of them.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 18:44:48
Lets say that the hedgerows around waterways, lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds are the priority for socio-economic reasons. It means we do not have to bother with nitrogen supplementing as dredged nutrient rich mud is available.

Lets change the ratio to 10% biochar, 40% dredged mud and 50% pre-existing soil (the reduction is due to soil with high C content automatically increases that content if not subject to intensive agriculture. Something odd happens to methane from decomposing biomass if there is enough carbon in the soil. It turns into carbon(s) instead of CH4. Black soil is self-replicating in a sense.

Dig a 2 deep and wide ditch. Mix the soil excavated with mud and biochar. Fill the ditch. Top off with the remaining 50% to create a mound. Plant tree seedlings, brush, plants and grasses. Done!

We know have the ratios we need.
jergul
large member
Fri Feb 14 18:45:09
Lets say that the hedgerows around waterways, lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds are the priority for socio-economic reasons. It means we do not have to bother with nitrogen supplementing as dredged nutrient rich mud is available.

Lets change the ratio to 10% biochar, 40% dredged mud and 50% pre-existing soil (the reduction is due to soil with high C content automatically increases that content if not subject to intensive agriculture. Something odd happens to methane from decomposing biomass if there is enough carbon in the soil. It turns into carbon(s) instead of CH4. Black soil is self-replicating in a sense.

Dig a 2 deep and wide ditch. Mix the soil excavated with mud and biochar. Fill the ditch. Top off with the remaining 50% to create a mound. Plant tree seedlings, brush, plants and grasses. Done!

We now have the ratios we need.
jergul
large member
Sun Feb 16 14:12:15
ahem. Above hedgerows are also very good flood, drainage and erosion control.

It seemed timely to point this out.
Seb
Member
Sun Feb 16 15:30:37
Yes. Most of the flooding issues are related to deforestation (those not due to the bizarre habit of building in depressions previously allocated for future reservoirs).

Increases run-off dramatically.
jergul
large member
Sun Feb 16 15:58:10
http://www...=streambankprotection.layering

Actually sort of like I imagined. With UK appropriate saplings of course.

Seb
Do you agree that the industry trigger is as simple as requiring natural gas cracking facilities (for whatever purpose) to mix in 10% biofuels and oils?

In addition of course to creating demand for biochar and seedlings through purchasing and subsidy schemes similar to what the woodland trust is already doing?
Seb
Member
Sun Feb 16 16:37:56
I have to say, I've kinda checked out of this conversation. It's been an incredibly intense two weeks at work and I've sort of lost the thread of what you are proposing.

I like the cracking and hydrogenising domestic gas as I think it's a major leverage point.

Ultimately, the gas will run out so it will need to transition to something else, so working out how that works along the way is sensible.

the whole "plant a lot of trees" thing seems very sensible to me as a way to get to net zero or negative - Labour had something along this lines in their manifesto.

If you ran it through the Forestry Commission I don't see why you couldn't set up tree factories at existing gas power plants in a few years. If CCS works (*big if there though) the obvious place to start is at the existing gas plants. Cracking is just a way of centralising the emissions associated with domestic consumption of gas so it can be captured.

The biochar is more problematic in the sense that it needs a bit longer to get the cycle going (assuming there isn't existing forestry you can reallocated the wood for biochar from, which seems reasonable).

There are lots of opportunities for optimising all this stuff in steady state, but really I'm more interested in how we get mass roll out at scale and pace to hit net zero by 2030s.
jergul
large member
Sun Feb 16 17:28:49
Seb
"I'm more interested in how we get mass roll out at scale and pace to hit net zero by 2030s."

Mass roll out and sequestration of biochar is the only way. Think grass, not trees when thinking of feedstock production at scale.

You could just dump biochar at sea to sequester it (probably), but it remediate qualities suggest it actually be put to some use.

Its a bit funny how you are thinking more in terms of planned economies and I on market mechanisms.

How can I get the market to do what I want it to do (make biochar, then put it to good use).

I have 0 faith in CCS as a reasonably efficient way of permanently sequestering CO2.

Cracking facilities need to insentivised to put the CO2 they produce to use in a way that ultimatly locks down carbon in solid form.

Mandating that cracking facilities are required to use a certain fraction of biogas and oils in their cracking mix is interesting. Biogas and oils is of course a byproduct from biochar production.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 06:41:15
http://dat...ment/ST-13854-2019-INIT/en/pdf
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 17 07:36:13
Jergul:

Yes, but the question is how. Grass I thought was rather bad for char feedstock?

Anyway, I suspect mandating biological input for cracking would create perverse results (trucking biological material for pyrolysis around the country giving it a positive co2 footprint, or using imported Palm oil etc). Maybe fermenting compostable waste.

Some things so benefit from direction. Here, I would probably look for the state to lead, set things up, then exit. Markets can be finnikity to get working right, particularly when cap ex is involved. Of we are serious about net zero on time, then I'm a fan of JFDI.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 07:53:23
JFDI would amount to funding the insane number of trusts you have engaged in various forms of land and water management.

Here is money if you use biochar and bury it in an as remediative way as possible that also includes trees somehow.
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 07:56:46
That last link poorly showed the EU getting on the biogas idea to lower natural gas usage.

We are looking a bit forward. We are not even done removing coal yet.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 17 08:24:50
http://www.biogas-info.co.uk/resources/biogas-map/

Forestry commission already has the networks and powers I think so "plant more trees" seems simple enough given funding and priority.

If you want them to use biochar, then you can just do that too, which creates the demand.

On the gasification side, hydroginsation of the grid is a bit more complex but doable. It's when you get to mandating the biogas feedstock. I don't see quite how that works, other than that the grid is required to buy a certain amount of bio methane (which won't necessarily be the gas thats cracked, as it'll all get mixed up into the grid anyway).
jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 08:35:26
Biochar is key. More important than trees. The carbon is permanently locked and can be sequestered at much higher densities than what is stored in trees.

It seems to me to make sense to crack biogas and oil all the way down to H2. Since we are cracking anyway.

A full roll out of the Leedsproject at scale will give something in the order of 400 cracking facilities.

That is how you store the CO2 equivalent. The concentrated CO2 from cracking could then just be viewed as an interesting byproduct with potential economic value.

jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 11:37:54
Ah, I forgot. 1 kg CH4 gives 0,25kg H2.

1 kg CH4 14,9 kwh
0,25 kg H2 10 kwh (HHV), 8,3 (LWV).

Hence the energy loss.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 17 15:45:21
jergul:

Hmm, that doesn't look right.


802kj for a mole of CH4 vs 286kj per mole of hydrogen.

Should be a ratio of 4 hydrogen molecules for each molecule of CH4 (CH4 +2H2O > CO2 +4H2O).

"It seems to me to make sense to crack biogas and oil all the way down to H2. Since we are cracking anyway."

Biogas that gets to the gas grid just goes off. In my scenario, it's either cracked to hydrogen and sent off to domestic burners, or it is burned in gas plants - in both case the CO2 is captured, but I'm not sure it's realistically feasible for all of it to be sequestered in biological material at the rate it is consumed. Realistically, most of it needs to be put somewhere else (even if only temporarily for a few decades). Likely old gas fields.


jergul
large member
Mon Feb 17 16:10:50
Seb
1kg CH4 -> 0.25kg H2

You dont need to capture specific molecules CO2.

CO2 needs to be captured and stored in the form of C(s).

This is done most elegantly by using photosynthesis, then treating the resulting material to get solid carbon.

I have close to no faith in CCS at scales even close enough to matter.

You have to reduce carbon released to the air in CO2 form by 1 ton per person per year to reach carbon neutrality.

Its actually not that daunting.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 17 16:40:28
jergul:

Ok, but in the meantime, we are cracking/burning natural gas - so we have loads of CO2. More than we can reasonably lock away with photosynthesis.

It seems to me that as you have the stuff concentrated, you can do some nice things locally, but a lot of that isn't going to be realistically fed into plants. Be they in green houses or tubes of algae.

Elsewhere you should be certainly planting what I shall scientifically call "a fuck load" of trees.

It seems to me that sticking it under ground is better than venting it into the atmosphere. At the very least it provides you with a few tens of decades to transition to fully nuclear/renewable.

In other words: do both. Biochar, tree factory, algae - the works.
Seb
Member
Mon Feb 17 16:41:02
Maybe you can get to a net negative.
jergul
large member
Tue Feb 18 01:19:34
Seb
The great thing about cracking once we ignore the bad things about cracking is:

Residue heat
Residue refrigeration (if we assume LNG)
CO2 concentrations
Direct use of biogas in production feed
Capital intensive (so $$$ available)
Probable proximity to solar/wind (transmission loss)
Probable land allotments available
Probable good infrastructure access
Probable proficient organization skillpool
Probable relatively large scale

All of above contribute to biochar and nursery production efficiency. The sum is a pretty good unfair (not duplicatible) advantage.
jergul
large member
Wed Feb 19 01:59:43
http://www...r-wasting-away/5078393.article

Feedstock, biochar.

Some degree of subsidy to the woodchip producer to cover costs of toxin and metal removal (payable for example per ton toxin and metal removed).
jergul
large member
Thu Feb 20 05:00:44
Clean energy is taking on a whole new meaning. The Norwegian State is looking into NH3 development as an energy source (its boiling point is much more forgiving than hydrogen and natural gas).

jergul
large member
Thu Feb 27 15:53:47
Well, reaching climate targets suddenly seems a lot more likely. This year may easily become a write-off growthwise.

Giving green alternatives a breather to catchup.
Dukhat
Member
Fri Feb 28 07:55:03
Fracking going to die thankfully. And the travel boom dying for years is another huge breather. Airline travel had been growing at geometric rates and will collapse for a few years. Good for the world. Hopefully, dems can win in texas so we can get some mass transit. Life’s so much better when you can take a subway or skyrail.
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