Gislason S.R.,University of Iceland |
Hassenkam T.,Copenhagen University |
Nedel S.,Copenhagen University |
Bovet N.,Copenhagen University |
And 9 more authors.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2011
On April 14, 2010, when meltwaters from the Eyjafjallajökull glacier mixed with hot magma, an explosive eruption sent unusually fine-grained ash into the jet stream. It quickly dispersed over Europe. Previous airplane encounters with ash resulted in sand-blasted windows and particles melted inside jet engines, causing them to fail. Therefore, air traffic was grounded for several days. Concerns also arose about health risks from fallout, because ash can transport acids as well as toxic compounds, such as fluoride, aluminum, and arsenic. Studies on ash are usually made on material collected far from the source, where it could have mixed with other atmospheric particles, or after exposure to water as rain or fog, which would alter surface composition. For this study, a unique set of dry ash samples was collected immediately after the explosive event and compared with fresh ash from a later, more typical eruption. Using nanotechniques, custom-designed for studying natural materials, we explored the physical and chemical nature of the ash to determine if fears about health and safety were justified and we developed a protocol that will serve for assessing risks during a future event. On single particles, we identified the composition of nanometer scale salt coatings and measured the mass of adsorbed salts with picogram resolution. The particles of explosive ash that reached Europe in the jet stream were especially sharp and abrasive over their entire size range, from submillimeter to tens of nanometers. Edges remained sharp even after a couple of weeks of abrasion in stirred water suspensions.
News Article | December 28, 2016
When it comes to the environment, 2016 brought a steady stream of grim news. The year will almost certainly hold the prize for the hottest in recorded history, eclipsing the records set in 2015 and 2014. Researchers tracked how Antarctic ice sheets continue to melt and how the Arctic continues to warm. Coral reefs are dying. Air and water problems keep surfacing around the globe. Some scientists are predicting that sea levels will rise even more than expected in coming decades, while others are linking extreme weather events to the changing climate and detailing how environmental and climatic factors are fueling the spread of Zika and other devastating diseases. At the same time, it’s not all bad news out there. The year saw some clear signs of environmental progress, too. Rare though they were, these five environmental stories were true bright spots: 1) Global carbon emissions appear to have stopped increasing. A picture is beginning to emerge of a world where the increase in emissions of carbon dioxide seems to be flattening, despite countries’ continuing use of fossil fuels. In the United States, emissions are actually going down. Data from the Global Carbon Project suggests that global emissions have not changed for three years straight. Moreover, the cause has not been a global recession — growth has continued. What appears to be happening is a “decoupling” of economic growth from carbon emissions, thanks to more clean energy and other lower-emitting sources of energy like natural gas. From the perspective of the climate system, it isn’t enough for emissions to flatten; they actually have to go down (and down and down). But this plateau is a very good start. 2) Worldwide, wind and solar are booming. The U.S. solar industry has experienced a blockbuster year. According to one recent report, the industry added a record 4,143 megawatts (or million watts) of solar-generating capacity in the third quarter of 2016 alone, with similar growth projected in coming months. Wind energy also had a record year, with thousands of turbines popping up from the U.S. heartland to Europe to China. This nation’s first offshore wind farm also became a reality off the coast of Rhode Island. That growth shows few signs of slowing. A report this fall from the International Energy Agency said renewable energy products surpassed all other sources of new electricity in 2015, with wind and solar leading the way. Renewables still account for only about 23 percent of the electricity produced worldwide, according to the report. But the agency predicted that will increase to 28 percent by 2021, as the costs of building wind and solar farms continue to decline. 3) World leaders seem determined to combat global warming (well, most world leaders). In late 2015, leaders from nearly 200 countries joined a landmark climate accord negotiated in Paris. Each country pledged to help slash greenhouse-gas emissions, with the goal of avoiding the most drastic effects of global warming in the decades ahead. In 2016, countries began the first steps of backing up those promises. In October, the accord officially entered into force when more than 55 countries, representing more than 55 percent of global emissions, ratified the deal. The following month in Morocco, representatives took initial steps toward implementing the deal’s ambitious goals. That said, the fate of the Paris accord is uncertain. The United States pledged to cut its emissions 26 percent to 28 percent below their 2005 level in the coming decade, but whether the country can meet that mark remains unclear. Other countries face similar obstacles. And even if countries meet their initial pledges, experts say the world must scale up its ambition over time. In addition, President-elect Donald Trump promised during his campaign to “cancel” U.S. participation in the deal, raising questions about whether other countries would stick to it if the United States abandons its leadership role. 4) Technology is providing a glimmer of hope. Iceland is home to magnificent landscapes, geothermal spas and spectacular views of the Northern Lights. But it also touted a potentially major advance in the growing effort to store carbon dioxide rather than allowing it to escape into the atmosphere, where it can fuel global warming. Officials at Reykjavik Energy took carbon emissions from a geothermal plant (along with emissions of hydrogen sulfide, a dangerous gas) and stowed them away in the rocky ground 400 to 800 meters (1,300 to 2,600 feet) deep. Once injected into basalt rock, the carbon dioxide rapidly was mineralized, or turned into rock. The Carbfix project, as it was known, is a big deal because it means the gas cannot escape back into the atmosphere. American researchers are working to take the science even further, in hopes that such storage of large amounts of carbon dioxide — that either come from industrial processes or are sucked from the atmosphere — may be a key piece of the solution to climate change. “We’d seen these things in the lab, but the field is often a case where your best-laid plans and ideas from lab experiments fall apart and just don’t work out,” one researcher said. In this case, the experiment might just work in the real world, too. 5) The oceans are finally getting the attention they deserve. A decade ago, only a fraction of the world’s oceans were protected from overfishing and other environmental threats. Slowly but surely, that has begun to change. In 2006, President George W. Bush designated an island chain spanning nearly 1,400 miles of the Pacific northwest of Hawaii as a national monument. This summer, President Obama expanded the Papahānaumokuākea (pronounced “Papa-HA-now-moh-koo-AH-kay-ah”) Marine National Monument to 582,578 square miles of land and sea, creating the largest ecologically protected area on the planet. In September, the State Department hosted the third annual Our Ocean conference, a global gathering of government leaders, scientists and environmental activists aimed at hastening protections. Roughly 3 percent of the oceans are now safeguarded — far from the 30 percent to 40 percent that many scientists claim is necessary for the seas’ sustainability over the long term, but a vast improvement in only a few years. “I’m thrilled with the progress we’ve made,” Secretary of State John F. Kerry told The Washington Post in an interview, even as he said much more work lies ahead.
News Article | June 9, 2016
Carbon dioxide has been pumped underground and turned rapidly into stone, demonstrating a radical new way to tackle climate change. The unique project promises a cheaper and more secure way of burying CO2 from fossil fuel burning underground, where it cannot warm the planet. Such carbon capture and storage (CCS) is thought to be essential to halting global warming, but existing projects store the CO2 as a gas and concerns about costs and potential leakage have halted some plans. The new research pumped CO2 into the volcanic rock under Iceland and sped up a natural process where the basalts react with the gas to form carbonate minerals, which make up limestone. The researchers were amazed by how fast all the gas turned into a solid – just two years, compared to the hundreds or thousands of years that had been predicted. “We need to deal with rising carbon emissions and this is the ultimate permanent storage – turn them back to stone,” said Juerg Matter, at the University of Southampton in the UK, who led the research published on Thursday in the journal Science. Matter said the only thing holding back CCS was the lack of action from politicians, such as putting a price on carbon emissions: “The engineering and technology of CCS is ready to be deployed. So why do we not see hundreds of these projects? There is no incentive to do it.” The Iceland project has already been increased in scale to bury 10,000 tonnes of CO2 a year and the basalt rocks used are common around the world, forming the floor of all the oceans and parts of the land too. “In the future, we could think of using this for power plants in places where there’s a lot of basalt and there are many such places,” said Martin Stute, at Columbia University in the US and part of the research team. Testing has taken place in the Columbia River Basalts, extensive deposits in Washington and Oregon in the US. India, which has many polluting coal power plants, has huge basalt deposits in the Deccan Traps. One potential challenge for the new technique is that it requires large amounts of water: 25 tonnes for each tonne of CO2 buried. But Matter said seawater could be used, which would be in plentiful supply at coastal sites. Another is that subterranean microbes might break down carbonate to methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, but this was not seen in the Iceland research. The research, called the Carbfix project, took place at Iceland’s Hellisheidi power plant, the world’s largest geothermal facility. The plant pumps up volcanically heated water to run electricity-generating turbines but this also brings up volcanic gases, including carbon dioxide and nasty-smelling hydrogen sulphide. The researchers re-injected 230 tonnes of the gas, which was dissolved in water to prevent it escaping, down into the basalt to a depth of 400-500m. They used tracer chemicals to show that over 95% of CO2 was turned into stone within two years, “amazingly fast” according to Matter. Edda Aradottir, who heads the project for Reykjavik Energy, said: “It was a very welcome surprise.” The Iceland project has now begun scaling up to bury 10,000 tonnes of CO2 a year, plus the hydrogen sulphide which also turns into minerals. The Columbia University group are also investigating another rock type, found in Oman, which may be able to turn CO2 into rock even better than basalt. In conventional CCS, the CO2 is stored as a gas in sedimentary rocks such as exhausted oil fields under the North Sea. Unlike basalt, these rocks lack the minerals needed to convert CO2 into stone. Such sedimentary reservoirs could potentially leak and therefore have to be monitored, which adds to costs. They have also raised concerns from the public and projects on land in the Netherlands and Germany have been halted as a result. “In Europe you can forget about onshore CCS,” said Matter. Conventional CCS also requires the CO2 to be separated from the mix of gases emitted by power stations and industrial plants, which is expensive. But the basalt-based CCS does not require this. However, Matter said there would still be a role for conventional CCS in places where power plants are close to good reservoirs. Stuart Haszeldine, professor of CCS at the UK’s University of Edinburgh and not involved in the new research said it was promising: “This is terrific. It may well provide a low-cost and very secure remedy for parts of the world where the suitable rocks exist. [But] this needs to be used as well as all the existing propositions, because the problem to be solved of thousands of million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year in the world is immense and no single remedy is anywhere near big enough or fast enough.” The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has concluded that CCS is hugely important to tackling climate change in the most cost-effective way. Without CCS, the costs of halting global warming would double, the IPCC said, an assessment with which the UK government’s advisers, the Committee on Climate Change, agrees. However, the UK government cancelled a pioneering £1bn CCS competition in November. Globally, CCS has not developed as quickly as hoped, although some companies are using CO2 injection to drive more oil and gas from older fields. Haszeldine said there have been over 100 injections of CO2 gas in different countries worldwide since 1972, none of which are known to have leaked. Other innovative approaches to CCS are being explored, including an ExxonMobil-backed project using fuel cells to make capturing CO2 cheaper and one from Ford which uses CO2 to make foam for use in their vehicles. Groups are also working on chemical advances to capture CO2 more easily.
News Article | November 27, 2016
There's no denying that 2016 has been a year of environmental extremes. Think "extraordinarily" hot Arctic temperatures, rapidly melting glaciers, unprecedented extinctions, and month-after-month of broken climate records. Now, perhaps more than ever, a bit of good news would be welcome. So, here it is: A groundbreaking experiment out of Washington state has shown that pure carbon dioxide (CO2) can be injected into basalt rock and naturally converted into a stable, solid mineral. Earlier laboratory studies suggested this could take millennia to occur, but the recent field trial was successful in just two short years. This is hugely significant for a couple of reasons. For starters, as Motherboard previously pointed out, human activities emit around 40 billion tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year. Climate scientists agree that greenhouse gas emissions are the primary driver of global warming, and to mitigate the progression of climate change, we'll need to find a way to reduce or capture much of that carbon. Furthermore, the ability to sequester CO2 in basalt, specifically, is a tremendous bonus, according to Peter McGrail, a researcher at the US Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and lead author of the new study published in Environmental Science & Technology Letters. Basalt is a common type of volcanic rock that contains elements like calcium, magnesium, iron, and manganese, and is found all across the world. Much of the ocean floor is founded on basalt, and vast fields of it have even been identified on our moon. "These continental-scale basalt formations are one of the largest geological formations on our planet. They're spread all across the globe both onshore and offshore, and in really important locations," McGrail told me over the phone. In India, for example, where fossil fuel emissions are high and carbon storage options are thin, local basalt flows known as the Deccan Traps could play a future role in sequestering greenhouse gases. Because of its chemical composition, basalt can produce a unique carbonate mineral called "ankerite" when exposed to the acidic conditions enabled by CO2. While this all might seem like regular old chemistry, the implications of a solid hunk of CO2 are exciting. Traditionally, when carbon emissions are injected underground, they're flooded into wells of porous rock as a supercritical fluid, or gaseous liquid. But what goes in might also come back out, and some fear that CO2 explosions are a dangerous consequence of such technology. With a carbonate material, however, there's "no possibility for leakage," and the solidified carbon dioxide "will be there essentially forever," McGrail added. Another similar project garnered attention this year when researchers with CarbFix, a group run by Iceland's geothermal power producer, Reykjavik Energy, managed to create calcite—a white, crystalline mineral—by injecting carbonated water into basalt rocks. Like the field test in Washington, this study proved that CO2 could be stored as a solid form between layers of basalt. But the project, which was described at length in Science, also had its drawbacks, claimed McGrail. "From a commercial perspective, yes, CO2 is soluble in water. But it's not that soluble, so if you're going to inject a ton of CO2 into the subsurface, you've got to access about 10 to 100 times the volume of water that one might need compared to injections of supercritical fluid," he said. "It's not 100 percent clear if that's even physically possible for a larger scale commercial project." The CarbFix study accessed CO2 from a nearby geothermal plant in Reykjavik, added water, and injected it up to 2,600 feet beneath the surface. Because the carbonated water solution can cause basalt to dissolve immediately, McGrail warned that injection wells could also clog up with key metal components. "With a supercritical injection, there's no worry at all," he said. An isotopic analysis of the Washington ankerite exactly matched its "fingerprint" with the isotopic content of the injected CO2, meaning it could have only been produced by a chemical reaction with the basalt's primary minerals. The project's "real coup de grace" and "absolute proof" of its success, McGrail told me. As for the practical application of this new method, that's one thing McGrail couldn't comment on. Someone will need to prove that it can be safely scaled up to larger quantities of CO2; "intermediate next steps" before the technique can become commercially viable. But for now, at least we know the possibilities are wide open. Get six of our favorite Motherboard stories every day by signing up for our newsletter.
News Article | November 18, 2016
Earlier this year, a project in Iceland reported an apparent breakthrough in the safe underground storage of the principal greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide — an option likely to be necessary if we’re to solve our global warming problem. The Carbfix project, run by a leading Icelandic producer of geothermal power, Reykjavik Energy, announced that it had successfully injected 250 tons of carbon dioxide, dissolved in water, into an underground repository of volcanic rocks called basalts — and that the carbon carbon dioxide hadn’t just stayed there. No — it was way better than that. Instead the carbon dioxide had apparently become one with the basalt, undergoing a fast chemical reaction and forming a type of rock called a carbonate in two years’ time. That’s a big deal because it means the gas would not escape back to the atmosphere again even if the underground repository were somehow compromised. And now, a group of American researchers has taken the science even farther, once again suggesting that storing carbon dioxide stripped from industrial processes, or sucked from the atmosphere, in basalt rocks may be a key part of the solution to climate change. Peter McGrail of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, a branch of the Department of Energy, and his colleagues were also working on storing carbon dioxide in basalts, based upon small scale laboratory experiments showing the gas does bind with the rock. And they, like the Carbfix project, were ready to scale up and perform an actual injection, in this case 1253 meters deep into basalts from the Columbia River region of Washington State. In their results reported Friday in the journal Environmental Science & Technology Letters, they go beyond the Carbfix project in several key ways, McGrail said. First, they injected carbon dioxide in its fluid, supercritical form, which is most likely to be how it is received and transported from industrial projects. And second, after two years had passed, they took core samples of the rocks, using a battery of tests to prove definitively that the CO2 had indeed turned into a carbonate rock called ankerite, comprised of calcium, carbon, oxygen, iron, magnesium, and manganese. This was a key demonstration because there are some carbonates that occur naturally in basalts, and so it was important to distinguish the new rock from what had already been there. “We’d seen these things in the lab, but the field is often a case where your best laid plans and ideas from lab experiments fall apart, and just don’t work out,” said McGrail. “And the fact now that we’ve seen this after just two years with the exact really same things that we’ve seen in the laboratory, it’s a really significant result for us.” In effect, what the researchers in both Iceland and Washington State were accomplishing was a high speed version of the geological process known as “weathering,” in which carbon dioxide very slowly becomes locked away in rock layers. Perhaps the most impressive part of the study was the researchers’ ability to analyze the very carbon itself inside the rock samples that they recovered two years after injection. Here, they looked at the ratio of two “isotopes,” or slight variants, of carbon to one another. This way, they were able to show that the rock contained a higher ratio of the slightly lighter carbon 12, as opposed to the somewhat heavier carbon 13, thus showing a signature that matched up with the fossil fuel-based carbon dioxide that had originally been pumped into the earth. “There is no other possible explanation,” said McGrail. “The only way that those carbonates had formed, it had to come from the CO2 that we injected.” McGrail says that after this successful field test, the next step for the research will now be to scale up and start injecting even larger quantities of carbon dioxide into basalts, in volumes more representative of an industrial scale operation. The new study is impressive, said Klaus Lackner, a researcher at Arizona State University who directs its Center for Negative Carbon Emissions, where he is developing technologies to capture carbon dioxide from the ambient air all around us — a process that would have to be complemented by some form of long-term storage of the gas. Lackner knew the project was ongoing but was not involved in the work. “Taking this study together with the Icelandic study, you see real progress toward making in situ mineralization a high quality affordable carbon storage technology,” Lackner said. “Sure, there are more questions to answer, but these papers represent immense progress. The two studies complement and reinforce each other.” Lackner added that “basalts on land and below the ocean floor are so abundant that if they can be pulled in, we have indeed unlimited storage capacity.” McGrail’s vision appears slightly different, though. He believes that much of the time, CO2 will be sequestered in geological repositories that contain it safely, but that do not react with it to form rock. However, he thinks that in key locations where basalts are available but other repositories are not, basalts will be used. But Lackner stressed the advantage of having the carbon dioxide permanently become rock. “There is a real value in being sure that storage is permanent on a geological time scale and that the carbon does not need any further monitoring,” he said. “Once you made carbonate there is no reason why it would revert again. You hit the thermodynamic ground state and it is very difficult to dislodge it from there.” Either way, the new research appears to be another step along the way to a world in which, even if our industrial processes necessarily produce lots of carbon dioxide, we have other options than to just let it spill into the atmosphere. Obama’s government just released a new oil and gas rule — and Trump’s may not like it much Scientists say climate change wiped out an entire underwater ecosystem. Again. For more, you can sign up for our weekly newsletter here and follow us on Twitter here.
News Article | February 15, 2017
Clean energy made critical strides in 2016. The Paris Climate accords went into effect, the price of solar installations continued to drop, investments in renewable energy soared, offshore wind finally got under way in the United States, and scientists made a series of technical advances that promise to make sustainable energy increasingly efficient and affordable. That last one is key, since invention is still the surest way to avoid the greatest impacts of climate change. Today's commercially available renewable technologies can't meet all of the world's energy demands, even if they're scaled up aggressively. The United States comes up about 20 percent short by 2050, according to a thorough analysis by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Meanwhile, the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded the world must cut greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 70 percent by midcentury, and to nearly zero by 2100, to have any chance of avoiding warming levels that could ensure sinking cities, mass extinctions, and widespread droughts. So we need more highly efficient renewable energy sources, cheaper storage, smarter grids, and effective systems for capturing greenhouse gases. Here are some of the most promising scientific advances of 2016. One of the crucial missing pieces in the portfolio of renewable energy sources is a clean liquid fuel that can replace gasoline and other transportation fuels. One of the most promising possibilities is artificial photosynthesis, mimicking nature's own method for converting sunlight, carbon dioxide, and water into fuels. There have been slow if steady improvements in the field in recent years. But this summer, Harvard scientists Daniel Nocera and Pamela Silvers, in partnership with their co-authors, developed a "bionic leaf" that could capture and convert 10 percent of the energy in sunlight, a big step forward for the field. It's also about 10 times better than the photosynthesis of your average plant. The researchers use catalysts made from a cobalt-phosphorous alloy to split the water into hydrogen and oxygen, and then set specially engineered bacteria to work gobbling up the carbon dioxide and hydrogen and converting them into liquid fuel. Others labs have also made notable strides in the efficiency and durability of solar fuel devices in recent months, including Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis. This year the latter lab created a solar-driven device that converted carbon dioxide to formate at 10 percent efficiency levels. Formate can be used as an energy source for specialized fuel cells. But the field still faces considerable technical challenges, as an earlier MIT Technology Review story explained, and any commercial products are still likely years away. This spring, a team of MIT researchers reported the development of a solar thermophotovoltaic device that could potentially push past the theoretical efficiency limits of the conventional photovoltaics used in solar panels. Those standard solar cells can only absorb energy from a fraction of sunlight's color spectrum, mainly the visual light from violet to red. But the MIT scientists added an intermediate component made up of carbon nanotubes and nanophotonic crystals that together function sort of like a funnel, collecting energy from the sun and concentrating it into a narrow band of light. The nanotubes capture energy across the entire color spectrum, including in the invisible ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths, converting it all into heat energy. As the adjacent crystals heat up to high temperatures, around 1,000 °C, they reëmit the energy as light, but only in the band that photovoltaic cells can capture and convert. The researchers suggest that an optimized version of the technology could one day break through the theoretical cap of around 30 percent efficiency on conventional solar cells. In principle at least, solar thermophotovoltaics could achieve levels above 80 percent, though that's a long way off, according to the scientists. But there's another critical advantage to this approach. Because the process is ultimately driven by heat, it could continue to operate even when the sun ducks behind clouds, reducing the intermittency that remains one of the critical drawbacks of solar power. If the device were coupled with a thermal storage mechanism that could operate at these high temperatures, it could offer continuous solar power through the day and night. Perovskite solar cells are cheap, easy to produce, and very efficient at absorbing light. A thin film of the material, a class of hybrid organic and inorganic compounds with a particular type of crystal structure, can capture as much light as a relatively thick layer of the silicon used in standard photovoltaics. One of the critical challenges, however, has been durability. The compounds that actually absorb solar energy tend to quickly degrade, particularly in wet and hot conditions. But research groups at Stanford, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, among other institutions, made considerable strides in improving the stability of perovskite solar cells this year, publishing notable papers in Nature, Nature Energy, and Science. "At the start of the year, they just weren't stable for long periods of time," says Ian Sharp, a staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. "But there have been some really impressive advances in that respect. This year things have really gotten serious." Meanwhile, other researchers have succeeded at boosting the efficiency of perovskite solar cells and identifying promising new paths for further advances. Electricity generation is responsible for producing 30 percent of the nation's carbon dioxide, so capturing those emissions at the source is crucial to any reduction plan. This year saw advances for several emerging approaches to capturing carbon in power plants, including carbonate fuel cells, as well as at least some promising implementations of existing technology in the real world. (Though, to be sure, there have been some starkly negative examples as well.) But most of these approaches leave open the question of what to do with the stuff after it's successfully captured. And it's not a small problem. The world produces nearly 40 billion tons of carbon dioxide annually. One method, however, appears more promising than initially believed: burying carbon dioxide and turning it into stone. Since 2012, Reykjavik Energy’s CarbFix Project in Iceland has been injecting carbon dioxide and water deep underground, where they react with the volcanic basalt rocks that are abundant in the region. An analysis published in Science in June found that 95 percent of the carbon dioxide had mineralized in less than two years, much faster than the hundreds of thousands of years many had expected. So far, it also doesn't appear to be leaking out greenhouse gases, which suggests it could be both cheaper and more secure than existing burial approaches. But further research will be required to see how well it works in other areas, notably including under the ocean floors, outside observers say. Another promising option for captured carbon dioxide is, essentially, recycling it back into usable fuels. Earlier this year, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory stumbled onto a method for converting it into ethanol, the liquid fuel already used as an additive in gasoline. The team developed a catalyst made from carbon, copper, and nitrogen with a textured surface, which concentrated the electrochemical reactions at the tips of nano spikes, according to a study published in Chemistry Select in October. When voltage was applied, the device converted a solution of carbon dioxide into ethanol at a high level of efficiency. The materials were also relatively cheap and the process worked at room temperature, both critical advantages for any future commercialization. “We’re taking carbon dioxide, a waste product of combustion, and we’re pushing that combustion reaction backwards,” said lead author Adam Rondinone in a news release. In addition to converting captured carbon dioxide, the process could be used to store excess energy from wind and solar electricity generation. Some outside researchers, however, are skeptical about the initial results and are anxiously awaiting to see if other labs can verify the findings.
News Article | October 28, 2016
Reykjavík, 2016-10-28 18:04 CEST (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Board of Directors at Reykjavik Energy (OR) has agreed to the establishment of a platform to issue bonds and other short-term notes for a total outstanding amount of ISK 50 billion. OR’s debt issuance forecast amounts for up to ISK 16 billion from October 24th 2016 to year-end 2017. Financing can be in the form of bonds, short-term notes or bank loans. The above is consistent with OR’s approved forecast. Note: Earlier publication of this announcement didn't include this English version of it.
News Article | November 29, 2016
Reykjavík, 2016-11-29 14:03 CET (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- [Here is added an attachment containing tables of changes in OR‘s financial forecasts for year 2017 and years 2018-2002.] In The City of Reykjavik‘s budgeting process, assumptions were updated. Since Orkuveita Reykjavíkur‘s (OR, Reykjavik Energy) budget is a part of The City‘s consolidated budget, OR‘s budget, published October 3rd 2016, has been adjusted accordingly. OR‘s revised financial forecast for year 2017 and a five-year forecast for years 2018 through 2022 was approved by The Board of Directors today and is attached.
News Article | November 28, 2016
Reykjavík, 2016-11-28 20:43 CET (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In The City of Reykjavik‘s budgeting process, assumptions were updated. Since Orkuveita Reykjavíkur‘s (OR, Reykjavik Energy) budget is a part of The City‘s consolidated budget, OR‘s budget, published October 3rd 2016, has been adjusted accordingly. OR‘s revised financial forecast for year 2017 and a five-year forecast for years 2018 through 2022 was approved by The Board of Directors today and is attached.
News Article | February 16, 2017
Reykjavík, 2017-02-16 18:15 CET (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Board of Directors of ON Power, Orkuveita Reykjavíkur‘s (OR; Reykjavík Energy) fully owned subsidiary, has decided to decrease its forecast investments through year 2022 by ISK 8 billion. Following a thorough analysis by geologists and technicians of the geothermal resource supplying ON Power’s largest power plant at Hellisheidi, the BoD resolved to lower the company’s forecast investments. The reductions include reduced number of boreholes to be drilled and their connections to the plant. ON Power’s earlier forecast was included in the Reykjavik Energy Financial forecast 2017 and five year forecast 2018-2022 published November 28th 2016.