Here’s my secret plan to capture carbon, help our planet heal and in the process help people that need the most help.
Trees, forest is the most efficient option for humanity to capture carbon and in the process generate many very useful byproducts. These byproducts include wood for construction and other industries, fruits, nuts and other edible products, etc. Another question is where these new forests should be planted. These new forests should not compete with agriculture for use of productive land. The best option is to use land that otherwise is not getting much use, and for that reason deserts come to mind. Subsequent problem that needs to be solved is how to irrigate this land to allow the forestation to happen. For that solar energy is a very good option.
Interestingly enough large solar panel installations create their own micro-climate that encourages vegetation and increase precipitation due higher temperature on the surface of the panels. Solar panels reduce the reflection of sunlight from the surface known as the albedo effect. This triggers a positive albedo-precipitation-vegetation feedback that leads to precipitation increases of about 50%, the authors report.
And since most deserts are populated by most disadvantaged people, availability of water, electricity and vegetation could improve living condition of these people in multiple ways.
I think the best place for first such experiment is northern part of Saudi Arabia. Here’s my secret plan:
- Make a deal with Saudi Arabia to allow a large swath of land near Israeli and Jordanian border to be used for solar panels.
2. Some of the electricity produced by this installation can be sold to Israel and Jordan, part of it can be given to impoverished local population, and the rest can be used to power the desalination plants.
3. Use Israeli desalination technology to build multiple plants.
4. Same as with electricity, some of the desalinated water can be sold to Israel and Jordan, some given to impoverished local population. The rest could be used for irrigation.
5. Use Israeli’s drip irrigation technology to irrigate desert efficiently.
6. Local population can also use some of this water to grow productive agricultural products like fig palms, bananas, etc.
Benefits of such plan are many:
1. Carbon capture is a major one;
2. This plan could have a very big and positive effect on local community, improving their lives in many ways.
3. Increase economic cooperation between Israel, Jordan and SA. Construction of solar panel installations , desalination plants, irrigation systems will generate economic activities, will employ local laborers and increase cooperation between the neighboring countries.
4. By providing both water and electricity produced using alternative energy this plan will further reduce the use of the fossil fuels in Israel and Jordan.
Rinse and Repeat, these plan can be repeated everywhere in the world where there is a desert and or unproductive land. Sahara, Sinai desert, Gobi, etc. this plan can be implemented all over the world. Providing electricity, clean drinking water, and capturing carbon in the process.