Home > Engineering, Environment, Kenya, Nature > Climate Change and All Our Gas

Climate Change and All Our Gas

I cannot say that I am a great believer in global warming, but at the same time, I do not deny that climate change may be taking place. It happens, it has always happened and it always will. We, the human race, may be helping the climate to change, but it would probably happen without our help.

Our world, all the other worlds in the Universe, the Universe itself is governed by laws – the laws of physics, chemistry, biology and maths. We haven’t figured out all these laws yet, but they are there. They are what we call nature. They are natural laws and cannot be bent or broken.

Hmm! I am off-topic already!

So back to gas.

Methane gas is a naturally occurring substance. It is formed when organic matter rots, and it escapes to atmosphere. The problem with methane is that it is 20 times more potent as a “greenhouse” gas than carbon dioxide, but we hear little about it. We all produce it, but all we hear about are references to cows farting methane. In fact, they don’t, they burp it.

The other difference between methane and carbon dioxide it that it burns. I am sure many of you have seen vents sticking out of landfill sites with a flame at the  top, burning off the methane from deep underground.

So, we have a gas, a naturally occurring gas, being produced all around us, twenty times more “dangerous” than CO2, but we do nothing with it!

It could be collected and used. In sufficient quantities, it could be used to fuel a power station. It is, after all the main constituent of natural gas that we pump up from deep underground.

On a smaller scale, we could capture this gas and use it for cooking, by collecting our organic waste rather than just leaving it to allow it to rot and pass methane to the atmosphere.

If all the organic waste that can be seen strewn along the roads of many Kenyan towns were to be collected and treated, the town would have a very cheap source of power that could run a generator or water pumps, or it could be bottled and sold for cooking.

At a smaller community level, methane collectors can provide an excellent fuel for cooking, clean, no smoke or particulates to irritate lungs and eyes.

And when methane is burned, it produces CO2 and water. So we reduce a gas with a potency factor of 20 to a gas with a potency factor of 1.

Now that’s got to be good for the environment.

No more cutting down of trees for fuel or charcoal.

And that’s got to be good for the environment, too!

  1. November 29, 2009 at 05:34

    Wow, this blog is definately getting bookmarked. Great Info all over the place.

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