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Can Turning Methane into CO2 Fight Climate Change?

Methane and carbon dioxide as prominent greenhouse gasses have a major role to play in global warming. However, if we compare their potential, methane is a notch above in terms of danger quotient than carbon dioxide. Choosing the lesser of two evils is a wise decision. But in some scenarios, it’s an opportunity.

Researchers are predicting that turning methane into carbon dioxide may help fight global climate change. It’s not that CO2 is less harmful. It plays a critical role in aggravating the impact of global warming, say sharp increase in global temperature. But many scientists have observed that methane traps more heat. Therefore, the best solution is to convert this powerful greenhouse gas into something less harmful, which will help reduce its impact on climate change. Moreover, scientists confirm that the strategy of restoring methane concentration to preindustrial levels in the atmosphere might eliminate almost sixth of total human-caused warming.

Researchers Began with Oxidizing Methane into Methanol

Rob Jackson, an earth scientist at Stanford University states that the scientists are not on a mission to reduce GHG emissions. Hence, they are looking for other opportunities which may help lessen the problems, instead of escalating it further. Jackson asserts that methane as a greenhouse gas has not caused as much global warming as CO2. Although, humans have had broadly impacted on the methane cycle, he adds.

Over the decades, several human activities have had a role in doubling methane concentration in the atmosphere. Raising livestock, extracting fossil fuels, and wastewater treatment plants are a few examples in this scenario. However, the biggest concern raised once the scientists found the heat trapping capacity of methane nearly 84 times bigger than CO2’s. Thus, they came up with the most effective solution of turning methane’s molecules into CO2. They believe it will slash methane’s climate-altering capacity.

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