Newcastle University - Dirt enlisted in green initiative

April 17, 2008

Soils that can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere are being designed by a team at Newcastle University. The research, believed to be the first of its kind, uses calcium to capture the surplus carbon that plants discharge into soils before it can escape in the atmosphere or into ground water. The team believes that the carbon released through the plant roots will react with calcium and form calcium carbonate, which will remain harmlessly in soil as grains or coatings on pebbles. It is hoped that the process could help the UK meet 5 to 10 per cent of the country's carbon reduction target, and some of the discoveries could be in use in two to three years.

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