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Keywords:

  • environmental chemistry;
  • hydrocarbons;
  • hydrogen;
  • methanol
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Methanol, a convenient liquid fuel and raw material for synthetic hydrocarbons, offers an alternative to depleting sources of fossil fuels and can be produced, for example, by reacting H2 with CO2 from industrial effluents or the atmosphere—good news with regards to global-warming concerns. This Essay discusses various aspects of current and alternative energy sources, with a particular focus on the “methanol economy” (see scheme).