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Engineering Environment

Engineering Environment is a complex challenge requiring a set of technologies that carefully handle Earth's climate system to counter the effects of global warming, like reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHGs) and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS). While these approaches are promising for the long term, one can not expect immediate relief by 2030.

Change in CO2 Emissions and GDP.
Change in CO2 Emissions and GDP. Source: World Bank (2023); Global Carbon Budget (2023).

EnviroChem Services (OPC) Pvt. Ltd. has been working on Solar Radiation Management (SRM), Bio-Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS), and Direct Air - Carbon Capture and Utilization (CCU).

Potential climate interventions involving solar radiation.
Potential climate interventions involving solar radiation. Source: Chelsea Thompson, NOAA/CIRES.

The developed Additive to the Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) will generate stratospheric aerosols after combustion works as the Stratospheric Aerosol Injection (SAI), which reflects sunlight into space, potentially reducing global temperatures. The SAI could reduce global temperatures quickly and relatively inexpensively. However, the implementation of the SAI will take another decade due to significant risks and uncertainties regarding weather patterns and global precipitation.

How Sulfur Dioxide Hides the Sun.
How Sulfur Dioxide Hides the Sun. Source: Andrew Lockley.

Moreover, techniques like BECCS and Direct Air - CCU address the root cause of climate change, which is excess GHG in the atmosphere, but are generally more expensive and slower to implement than SRM.

Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS).
Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS). Source: North Star.

However, combining these approaches with existing renewable energy and efficiency improvement measures could help stabilize the climate. For example, implementing SAF+SAI and scaling up BECCS+Direct Air - CCU alongside aggressive mitigation efforts like transitioning to renewable energy and improving energy efficiency could significantly reduce the rate of global warming and greenhouse gas concentrations. The latter one has projected promising outcomes. The best example is the Heat pumps, which could cut emissions by 500 million metric tons annually by 2030.

Providing domestic heating in the UK using either green hydrogen or heat pumps.
Providing domestic heating in the UK using either green hydrogen or heat pumps. Source: David Cebon, Hydrogen Science Coalition.
Governance Challenges

As the developed methodologies are still kept in the experimental stage and made controversial, these methods are not encouraged as the technology to mitigate climate change impacts.


However, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require approximately $ 2.4 Trillion/Annum in energy system investments from 2016 to 2035, only including costs for transitioning to renewable energy, enhancing energy efficiency, and deploying carbon capture and storage technologies. However, implementing SRM will cost about $ 100 Billion/Annum.


Moreover, SAF+SAI, a much more economical approach, SAF+SAI could lower global temperatures within a few years of implementation, providing a little break from climate change impacts while other mitigation efforts are scaled up.


ESPL has already Lab Tested the Direct Air - CCU unit, which costs approximately $600/tonCO₂ removed, to remove 1 billion tons of CO₂ annually by 2030, computing the implementation cost could be around $600 Billion/Annum. BECCS+Direct Air - CCU, a carbon-neutral approach, lowers the implementation cost to less than $600 Billion/Annum.


Climate Financing Gap from 2030 to 2050.
Climate Financing Gap from 2030 to 2050. Source: Statista.

We are purposefully ignoring the effect of Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, due to its sources such as cattle and agriculture waste.


While the engineering environment offers potential benefits, it is not a substitute for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The ethical and environmental risks include changes in global precipitation patterns, impacts on biodiversity, and governance challenges. Therefore, due to the need for robust governance frameworks, public engagement, and international cooperation, it is way better to plan for Terraforming Mars.


Terraforming Mars.
Terraforming Mars. Source: Kevin Gill, NSS.
When people ask me stupid questions, it is my legal obligation to give a sarcastic remark.

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