What are some green methods for dealing with waste products such as solid carbon dioxide and sugar cane fibres?

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ncchemist | eNotes Employee

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Solid carbon dioxide is called dry ice.  The problem with storing it this way is that at normal temperature and pressure the dry ice will convert back to gaseous CO2.  And keeping the dry ice cold long term is a very energy intensive proposition that is not a practical solution.  So the idea is to put the CO2 into a naturally high pressure area where it will remain a solid.  Two possibilities are deep underground and deep in the ocean.  CO2 dissolves in water and at cold temperatures and high pressures will form a sort of hydrate ice.  If we can find a way to capture CO2 released from fuel burning and pipe it deep in the ocean or ground, this could be a possibility.

After harvesting and processing sugar cane, the resulting fibrous waste is called bagasse.  It is normally burned for fuel or disposed of in landfills.  But it can be used as a source of biofuel and the fibers can even be used in place of wood pulp to make paper and paper products.  This saves wood from being used and it keeps the sugar cane fiber out of landfills.

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James Pike | Student, Grade 4 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted on

I will mainly talk about CO2. Ok how is it produced. It is a main product of combustion (basically burning). So whenever I burn wood, coal, oil or anything like that I release a bunch of CO2 into the atmosphere. Most transport that requires an engine also releases CO2. 

How to store it. Well that is the main problem, we don't really know what to do. The first step is to cool/compress it to make it solid CO2 (a.k.a dry ice). Then we are stumped. Some scientists want to send it to space but that would be way too expensive. Another more interesting one is to put it in these small missile-shaped containers and shoot it to the seabed, where it stays. 

Other than that it's still very much an open field. 

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