Technology

Published on March 28th, 2013 | by admin

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Is ‘Burning Ice’ the Solution for Shrinking Fossil Resources?

Efforts to extract natural gas from the fossil fuel methane hydrate have been increased over the last decades, in order to solve the issue with shrinking global resources. Natural gas is being used either as a fuel in domestic and industrial environments or as a raw material in manufacturing and electric power generation.

Burning the gas, CO2 and water remains and heat is released. If methane is let into the atmosphere, it contributes to the global warming, which makes it to the second biggest greenhouse gas. In contrast to CO2 which is the most abundant greenhouse gas, does methane absorb heat 20 times more, but stays in the atmosphere for a shorter time.

The solid element methane hydrate can be either found in the permafrost of the arctic regions or the Earth’s continental margins, which makes it quite difficult to harvest. At these places, it has been formed by gas methane and water under vast pressure and heat.

Although, not all the resources are harvestable with the current technologies at a profit, some countries see it as a solution to become independent from foreign energy deliveries. Japan has been firstly successful to extract the resource from its Pacific coast, and is aiming to proceed with its activities aiming to extracting it in a commercial manner in six years.

Also the U.S. is running research projects in Alaska, and China and India run activities at their coastal areas accordingly. As those countries own considerable amounts of the natural resource, it may become common practice that this will built up a major source of natural gas soon, which may help to decrease current high energy prices for the consumer. Installation work providers such as Ainscough Vanguard may profit from the upcoming structural changes in the energy industry. You can click here for more information on structural installations.

Although the current developments in Japan are marking a milestone, they should also be seen as critical turning point. Burning natural gas sets free the major greenhouse gas C02 which leads to global warming. Moreover, if a big amount of methane gets into the atmosphere, its global effects may be devastating.

Finally, its extraction from Polar Regions is challenging and may harm the ice layer. Consequently, governments may do better investing in renewable energies, and not into another fossil fuel which existence again is not infinitive.


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