"Irrigated afforestation of the Sahara and Australian Outback to end
Leonard Ornstein, Igor Aleinov, and David Rind
Abstract Each year, irrigated Saharan- and Australian-desert forests
could sequester amounts of atmospheric CO2 at least equal to that from
burning fossil fuels. Without any rain, to capture CO2 produced from
gasoline requires adding about $1 to the per-gallon pump-price to cover
irrigation costs, using reverse osmosis (RO), desalinated, sea water.
Such mature technology is economically competitive with the currently
favored, untested, power-plant Carbon Capture (and deep underground, or
under-ocean) Sequestration (CCS). Afforestation sequesters CO2, mostly
as easily stored wood, both from distributed sources (automotive,
aviation, etc., that CCS cannot address) and from power plants.
Climatological feasibility and sustainability of such irrigated forests,
and their potential global impacts are explored using a general
circulation model (GCM). Biogeophysical feedback is shown to stimulate
considerable rainfall over these forests, reducing desalination and
irrigation costs; economic value of marketed, renewable, forest biomass,
further reduces costs; and separately, energy conservation also reduces
the size of the required forests and therefore their total capital and
operating costs. The few negative climate impacts outside of the forests
are discussed, with caveats. If confirmed with other GCMs, such
irrigated, subtropical afforestation probably provides the best,
near-term route to complete control of green-house-gas-induced, global
appeared online, open access (FREE DOWNLOAD), last August, and in print
last December, in the journal, Climatic Change.
Google indicates a few hundred unsolicited worldwide announcements of
its publication, and almost 100 online discussions of its content.
Yet it appears to have escaped the notice of the high efficiency
irrigation community ;-)
I though you might be interested.
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