Why Artificial Crude Oil Would Suffer the Same Way as Biomass
Fossil fuels are widely known to come from dead organic material embedded deep in several sedimentary layers, changed over the course of several million years through global geological processes.
Did you know that since the mid-20th century, research is already in the works to artificially produce oil in the same way? The technique is called thermal depolymerization (TDP), and the advantage of this new developing technology is that it wouldn’t take you millions of years for production. Modern processing plants using such techniques now only take a day to turn organic material into light crude oil!
Economic impracticalities and inferiority of the oil produced delayed its overall research progress. In addition, the price of oil wasn’t really that high back then. Today however, with the dangers of peak oil just looming a few decades ahead or sooner, the idea slowly gains support by various research institutions.
So the question is, should we allow research in artificial crude oil production to start taking its steps forward? This growing type of “renewable energy” would most likely suffer the exact same negative reception as biomass.
Renewable Energy at the Expense of Climate Change
The idea of an inexhaustible supply of energy makes us think of typical kinds of renewable energy like solar or wind energy. However, renewable energy doesn’t always mean green energy, something that biomass emissions had already taught us a few short years back. Think about the consequences if we are to keep producing artificial crude oil for the next 50 or 100 years?
If dependence on oil would never cease, it would then obviously lead to the continued production of greenhouse gases. Atmospheric industrial emissions would continue to envelop the entire planet, accelerating climate change, and eventually worsening the effects of global warming to more than just a few risen meters of sea level. The universal adaptation of thermal depolymerization holds serious potential to accelerate us even faster to the apocalyptic future of the movie Waterworld.
Renewable Energy with an Environmental Cost
If pollution due to industrial emissions were to continue, then we are also facing serious environmental problems. Biomass, despite increasing its share in renewable energy use, actually contributed a significant amount to air pollution in just a short period of time. Artificial crude oil that would be produced from thermal depolymerization would very much end the same way. It would just continue what raw crude oil, its “ancestor”, had been doing for more than a century.
Artificial crude oil could trigger climate and weather abnormality predictions all over again. It’s not just air pollution we are talking about here. Environmental effects of oil spills are also a complete menace to nature, and with an endless supply of artificial crude oil, we’ll probably be seeing one or two of these accidents every once in a while no matter how small or insignificant the chances may be.
These predictions and speculations might simply sound to you as an exaggerated version of the “stinky truth” about biomass, but I believe that this is something that must be reiterated seriously as a warning. The promise of renewable, artificial crude oil given by thermal depolymerization is nothing but another invitation to meet hell on Earth.
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