Turning USA into a net-zero carbon economy could involve covering land equivalent to seven states in geoengineering infrastructure, says Holly Jean Buck.
Turning the USA into a net-zero carbon economy could involve covering a landmass equivalent to seven states in geoengineering infrastructure, according to environmental social scientist Holly Jean Buck.
“We already have a lot of conflicts around land for renewable siting and we’ve only built out a small fraction of the amount of renewables we’re going to need,” she said.
Decarbonising will “really impact you”
In addition, decarbonising the USA will involve building intrusive infrastructure including power transmission lines as well as mines needed to extract the raw materials needed to build a fossil-free grid.
“It’s gonna really impact you,” said Buck, who is assistant professor of environmental sustainability at the University of Buffalo, USA.
“It’s significant. It’s not just about the visual aesthetic, it’s about who’s controlling it, it’s about how the identity of the region is changing. If it used to be an agricultural area, there’s a sense of loss around that.”
Reaching the climate targets set by the 2015 Paris Agreement “relies not just on slashing emissions, but also on developing the capacity to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere at the gigatonne scale,” Buck wrote in an essay published on Dezeen as part of its carbon revolution series.
Huge renewable energy and carbon capture schemes required
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