Global an­swer at our fin­gers

Pilbara News - - News - Peter Long Peter Long is the City of Kar­ratha Mayor.

In 2013, car­bon diox­ide in the at­mos­phere passed the 400 parts per mil­lion mark, the high­est it has been for at least a mil­lion years.

The last time the con­cen­tra­tion of Earth’s main green­house gas reached this mark, horses and camels lived in the high Arc­tic and the sea level was 10m higher than to­day.

Car­bon diox­ide gets into the at­mos­phere through vol­ca­noes and hu­mans burn­ing wood, coal, oil and gas.

It is one of the pri­mary causes of global warm­ing, which is why gov­ern­ments around the world are spend­ing large amounts of money to pro­mote en­ergy which does not re­lease car­bon diox­ide into the air.

The Pil­bara is blessed with some of the most in­tense sun­shine in the world, which gives us a huge ad­van­tage in the pro­duc­tion of so­lar elec­tric­ity with­out any car­bon diox­ide.

The prob­lem is stor­ing it — bat­ter­ies store charge only for a few days. One pos­si­bil­ity is to make hy­dro­gen, which can be sim­ply done by us­ing so­lar elec­tric­ity to split wa­ter.

Hy­dro­gen can be stored for­ever, is read­ily trans­ported and can be used in a fuel cell to pro­duce elec­tric­ity. It can be used to power elec­tric fuel cell ve­hi­cles, or to cleanly gen­er­ate mains elec­tric­ity.

Ja­pan is plan­ning to be­come a hy­dro­gen fu­elled coun­try and var­i­ous com­pa­nies are look­ing at the op­por­tu­nity to make hy­dro­gen from so­lar en­ergy in the Pil­bara to ex­port to Ja­pan, or across Aus­tralia.

We could be­come the clean en­ergy cap­i­tal of the na­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.