Using bacteria to clean up our carbon mess

Scientists from four Indian universities announced a discovery that enables them to use bacteria enzymes to trap and sequester CO2.

Scientists from four Indian universities announced a discovery that enables them to use bacteria enzymes to trap and sequester CO2.

Researches found a way to use seven bacteria enzymes to speed up chemical reactions that convert carbon dioxide to calcium carbonate, according to a Cleantech Group article. Calcium carbonate is typically found in limestone or chalk and can be used in cement to built roads.

While it's not clear if this breakthrough could be used to help capture carbon emitted by existing cars on the road, it may have an application to improve the environmental impact of electric cars. Critics of electric cars often argue that these vehicles aren't as green as they appear; that the electricity used to power electric cars may be supplied by equally dirty coal-fired plants.

But if you implement the chemical reaction in a factory chimney or power plant, the bacterial can trap the CO2 emissions, said Sadhana Rayalu, the project coordinator from the National Environmental Engineering and Research Institute in Nagpur, Maharashtra India.

(Source: Cleantech Group)

About the author

Liane Yvkoff is a freelance writer who blogs about cars for CNET Car Tech. E-mail Liane.

 

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