Modern technology, notably the discovery and exploitation of fossil fuels, has contributed to climate change, but it has also allowed mankind to recognise its impact on the world and seek solutions.
1. Captured CO2
Scientists blame rising global temperatures on man-made greenhouse gas emissions that trap radiation that otherwise escape to space.
A major greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2), has increased by over 50% that since industrial revolution.
Carbon capture, utilisation, & storage technologies are being employed to minimise CO2 emissions, with the Net Zero Teesside project being an excellent example.
Secluded deep beneath the water, this carbon will no long contribute to climate change, but might be synthesised into alternative fuels for future vehicles.
The NZT project’s goal is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in North East industry to zero by 2030.
But the Earth’s crisis is much bigger than a few corporations selectively decarbonising.
2. Seaweed For Cows
Methane is another significant greenhouse gas, with record-high emissions due to livestock rearing.
Unsurprisingly, agriculture accounted for about two-thirds of any and all methane emissions in the world between 2000 and 2017, with fossil fuels accounting for the remaining third.
Because cows digest their food by fermentation it in their stomachs, the sugars are transformed into simple substances that may be absorbed into the body.
The addition of a red seaweed from the tropics to cattle feed reduces methane emissions by 80%.
With roughly 1.5 billion cattle worldwide, there is just not enough seaweed to suppress such burps – however some scientists may be able to duplicate the key element that will help hold them down.
Individual dietary choices aren’t covered by prospective technical climate change solutions, but food innovation is.
Another fascinating option to reduce methane emissions from cattle rearing is to replace beef with insect substitutes, which is already happening in some regions.
Mealworms, for example, are abundant in protein but lack a number of essential minerals found solely in meat, such as iron.
However, even it’s not a quick remedy – insect burgers are still mostly a curiosity item rather than one that can be manufactured overseas and devoured.
Their suggestions include brightening the clouds over the poles to help them reflect radiation back out to space.
Another idea is to “green” the oceans by fertilising it to promote the growth of plants and algae that absorb CO2.
However, some research indicates that this could severely alter ocean ecosystems, preventing CO2 collection sufficient to offset emissions.
Businesses scrambled to deal with the effects of COVID-19 upon their employees, and governments hastened to lock up their nations to avert mass deaths.
However, working remotely may only be effective during the summer.
It turns out when structures have to be heated in the winter, having many people in one place saves energy, and some study suggests that this could even balance transportation emissions.
6. More Data Centres
Computing follows a similar rationale to heating individual residences versus corporate buildings.
However, modern datacenters are frequently substantially more fuel efficient than desktop PCs.
Rather than running energy-intensive apps on local workstations, consumers might start saving energy by running them in the cloud.
Amazon, Google, and Microsoft are major consumers of renewables.
Google and Microsoft also have introduced cloud gaming services that do not require players to buy consoles (which also generate emissions).
But data centres require high-speed internet connections, which emit emissions, and many people throughout the world lack access to such connections.
7. Efficiency In The Home
Making homes more fuel efficient is the single most effective technological answer to climate change.
In fact, several of the newest devices on the market can save households hundreds of pounds per year in energy costs.
Consumers may find out what it will cost them to use refrigerators, washing machines, light bulbs, and televisions by using the European Union’s energy labelling scheme.
Individual energy savings from design changes for these home goods may be minor, but they can add up in the course of this year for a home, and even more so across all homes in a country.
Buildings utilise 40% of total energy and emit 35% of CO2 in the EU, despite the fact that energy consumption per family has decreased over the last 50 years.
But, according the independent Committee on Global Warming, US homes are currently “unfit” to face the problems posed warming with the need to reduce the energy consumption. Buying newer, greener electronics may be a good start.