Sustainable Management of the Global Carbon Cycle Through Geostorage of Wood

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Abstract

Combustion of fossil energy sources has caused the carbon inventory of the atmosphere to increase by more than 200 Gt. It will be almost impossible to prevent it from growing by at least another 400 Gt in the present century. Theoretically, there exists only one single possibility to effect a decline of the resultant increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration: the excess carbon has to be removed from the carbon cycle by transferring it into an environment in which it is safe from oxidation, just as is the case for the deposits of fossil fuels. Only natural photosynthesis offers the possibility of efficiently fixing carbon dioxide from the air and removing it from the carbon cycle through geostorage of the resulting biomass. The present paper shows, in the context of an initial feasibility study, that the use of forests and the geostorage of wood in an environment corresponding to lignite deposits represents the ecologically most sensible and economical variant of removal of carbon from the carbon cycle and, thereby, reclamation of the atmosphere.

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