Adding Lime in Seawater Could Reduce Atmospheric CO2

spaceSome people check every possibility to reduce pollution, to make us live our lives in a clean and healthy environment. At a press conference about climate change solutions in Manchester, Tim Kruger, a former management consultant, announced that lime and salt water could stop or reverse CO2 accumulation in the atmosphere.

CO2 is one of the most dangerous gas that human activity creates, and even if we try to keep it at a lower rate we don’t seem to succeed. We are dependent of too many industries that burn natural gas, oil or coal which emit CO2. But one of the solutions could be the Cquestrate project which could decrease CO2 by adding lime into ocean water. But the dispersion of large quantities of lime into ocean water is illegal.

Oceans play a key role in the planets life cycle absorbing CO2 and slowing in this way the global warming. But the increased CO2 levels raise as well the acidity of the ocean endangering marine ecosystems. The Cquestrate project could have an interesting effect as CO2 reduction will result in decreased ocean acidity. The idea is very simple: make the ocean absorb more CO2 but in such way that it helps reduce it’s acidity. This can be made by converting limestone into lime and adding the lime to seawater. The lime reacts with CO2 from the seawater, converting it into bicarbonate ions, decreasing the acidity of the water. In this way is enabled continuous absorption of CO2 from the air and global warming reduction. “It’s essential that we reduce our emissions, but that may not be enough. We need a plan B to actually reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. We need to research such concepts now – not just the science but also the legal, ethical and governance considerations” said Kruger.

Things cannot always work perfectly, and we are used to see almost each invention coming with its problems, and this geo-engineering scheme is no exception. To become reality, people need to harvest about 10 cubic kilometers of limestone each year in order to absorb all the emissions the world produces. But another thing would greatly help: zero CO2 emissions at limestone harvesting.

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Cquestrate is one of the 20 schemes proposed at the Manchester Report, a two-day search for the best ideas to stop climate change. It’s feasibility is still under investigation and there are still many variables to take into consideration.


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  • larry hagedon

    We best be careful with such massive fixes. We could throw the earth into an ice age by messing around.

    We need to remember that CO2 is essential to life on earth and increased CO2 will promote lush plant growth which cools the planet, creates oxygen that we breath and increases our food supply. Green algae production will consume massive amounts of CO2 as that industry ramps up.

    Besides that, CO2 is a valuable chemical that will be used as a feedstock in many bio tech products and processes.

  • AK

    Black Carbon Soot is a bigger factor in warming than CO2. Eliminate the sources: coal, bunker fuel, jet fuel, diesel fuel, kerosine, gasoline and crude industrial fuels, etc. Prevention is the cure, not treating symptoms. There would be unintended consequences of lime on the environment. Don’t mess with Mother Nature.