A Salty Solution to Global Warming

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There is no shortage of ideas bouncing around about what to do with our warming planet--switch to renewablesswitch to plastic bags, construct space elevators in order to alter the atmosphere and block out the sun, or plug away as usual until the rapture.

Recently, researchers experimented with another: injecting CO2 into highly salty groundwater. They found that, over time, the CO2 will dissolve in the briny water, potentially mitigating global warming.

Briny patches of groundwater are found the world over and "are often relics of earlier hydrologic systems [that] have persisted for millions to tens of millions of years (or longer) because their high salinity makes them denser than shallow freshwater systems," writes Science Magazine.

Not only will the CO2 eventually dissolve, but, the researchers write, storing CO2 "by solubility trapping reduces the volume required to store the same amount of CO2 by structural...trapping by about 50 percent." Which is important, considering the fact that the International Energy Agency estimated that global carbon dioxide emissions were 31.6 gigatonnes last year. Hopefully there's a lot of brine.

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