Iceland’s Turning Greenhouse Gases Into Stone

by Hannah Brown

Positioned near the Hellisheidi Power Plant in Iceland, researchers at CarbFix, a $10 million project funded by Reykjavic Energy, the United States Department of Energy, and the EU, among others, combines water and carbon dioxide, compressed to the point that is in its liquid form, and injects the mixture thousands of feet down into balsatic rock, a reactive volcanic rock that makes up almost the entirety of Iceland’s foundation, as well as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge in general. The combination of carbon dioxide and water interacts with the rock as it releases calcium and magnesium and turns into the original mixture into limestone. Initially the model predicted that the process would take 5 years but CarbFix has found that it happens much faster than expected, essentially completing the transformation of carbon dioxide into limestone within one year. ( Continue reading