A new study by Duke University has revealed that leakage of carbon dioxide injected deep underground to
help fight climate change is turning up in drinking water aquifers near the surface, spiking the levels of contaminants found in the water tenfold or more in some places.
Governments and industry are turning to Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) in an effort to prevent carbon from entering the atmosphere and contributing to global warming. CCS captures the carbons produced by oil refineries, factories, or power plants and stores it deep below Earth’s surface, in a process known as geosequestration.
Robert P. Jackson of Duke University points to geological factors that can cause the sequestered carbon to leak into ground water aquifers: “Geologic criteria that we identified in the study can help identify locations around the country that should be monitored or avoided.” Jackson went on to point out that not all CCS storage sites will have problems: “By no means would all sites be susceptible to problems of water quality”.
How Carbon Sequestration Creates Groundwater Pollution
Contamination in affected water increases because carbons leaking into ground water combine with the water to produce acids. The acid water then eats away at minerals such as iron, calcium and sodium. “We found the potential for contamination is real, but there are ways to avoid or reduce the risk” according to Jackson.
One of the ways to protect yourself from the contamination caused by carbon sequestration is to use a home filtration system such as Life’s Dolphin Whole Home Filtration system which can effectively remove the contaminants produced by carbon sequestration. The harmful acid pH of affected water can be effectively reversed by using one of Life’s water ionizers. A combination of filtration and water ionization is necessary to remove contamination and raise water pH to healthful levels.
The study collected samples at storage sites that had been exposed to sequestered CO2 for a year. The samples revealed that “there are a number of potential sites where CO2 leaks drive contaminants up tenfold or more, in some cases to levels above the maximum contaminant loads set by the EPA for potable water”. A brief review of CCS sites in the US revealed 11 sites already in operation, and about 20 new sites planned in areas all around the country.
“Along with changes in carbonate concentration and acidity of the water, concentrations of manganese, iron and calcium could all be used as geochemical markers of a leak, as their concentration increased within two weeks of exposure to CO2,” Jackson said. Most of these minerals are associated with hard water, already a widespread problem in the US.
Why you need a water ionizer if you are on well water
Well water users are at particular risk because the acidifying carbon can creep into their water supply unnoticed. Acidic water is not safe to drink because it causes the body to absorb toxic metals like mercury. A water ionizer is the best solution, it will raise the pH of the water and help your body absorb beneficial minerals like calcium. As the nation becomes increasingly desperate to reduce carbon levels in the environment, you can expect problems from carbon sequestration to become more widespread
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