Converting methane to CO2 with bacteria

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When you think about greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide usually comes to mind. But in reality, methane gas is 25 times more potent than CO2 at trapping heat. So it comes as good news that researchers in Canada are now testing bacteria that can consume methane and release CO2 in its place. According to Energy and Environment News, the bacteria, known as methanotrophs, are found naturally in soil and produce no toxic byproducts in their gas exchange. They are being tested as a way to curb methane emissions from the oil and gas industry in Alberta, and over the long term, a single project could save 1-2 million metric tons of methane. Sounds like another reason to just adore bacteria.

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About the Author: David Rothbard

David Rothbard

David Rothbard is co-founder and President of CFACT.

  • Adrian Vance

    This is utter nonsense: Methane is a very poor absorber of IR radiation in the 0.5 to 16 micron band of “heat radiation.” Furthermore, it auto-oxidizes to CO2 and water vapor in sunlight even at very low levels. It has been called “Wil-O-The-Wisps” and become famous as “swamp gas.” I have seen it bubble up from bogs in Wisconson and flash into wispy flames many times a boy on vacation there. You can see the absorption charts on my website at http://adrianvance.blogspot.com just input “methane” to the search input box in the upper right hand corner.