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Can East Coast rocks save the climate?

By Juliet Eilperin

Could rocks on the East Coast be the key to our climate future? According to a group of scientists from Columbia University's Lamon-Doherty Earth Observatory, the answer is yes.

Buried volcanic rocks along the coasts of New York, New Jersey and New England--as well as possibly south of there--could help lock away the carbon dioxide emitted by coal-fired utilities and other sources.

A group of researchers including geophysicist David S. Goldberg, geologist Dennis Kent, and geologist and paleontologist Paul Olsen have published a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences looking at opportunities that can be found in basalt, an igneous rock.

Previous research looking into carbon sequestration sites in New York has targeted shale formations that are located inland, a more controversial proposal because some fear the CO2 could eventually leak from these sites.

The team used seismic and gravity measurements to outline several possible basalt underwater sites along the East Coast--including four areas of more than 1,000 square kilometers each--off northern New Jersey, Long Island and Massachusetts. A smaller area appears to lie under the beach of New Jersey's Sandy Hook peninsula.

"We would need to drill them to see where we're at," Goldberg said in a statement. "But we could potentially do deep burial here. The coast makes sense. That's where people are. That's where power plants are needed. And by going offshore, you can reduce risks."

For a look at the illustrations of such reservoirs, click here. Journalists can e-mail the PNAS press office for a copy of the paper.


Juliet Eilperin

 |  January 5, 2010; 11:44 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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..... hoax

Posted by: OneTermLoser | January 5, 2010 1:19 PM
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Dont even waste your time. This is about taxing us to death and controlling every aspect of our lives not taking co2 out of the air to further the global warming hoax.

Posted by: j751 | January 5, 2010 1:16 PM
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at this point, we might need to pump more carbon in the air if it gets any colder...

if it wasnt so dry, we would be having our second record breaking blizzard of the winter.

Posted by: dummypants | January 5, 2010 12:40 PM
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