Background #

If the problem resides in changes to the atmosphere, a lasting solution must be directed towards this source. The primary driver of climate change is deemed to be increases in CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere. This leads to a reduction in infra-red (IR) radiation to space, resulting in a slight warming of the atmosphere. This warming leads to the atmosphere having an increased capacity to hold water vapor, which is a more potent greenhouse gas (GHG) than CO2, amplifying the problem of slowing the IR radiation of surface heat. A warming atmosphere with a greater water retention capacity has the flow-on effect of drying out the land mass as water is transferred from all sources to the atmosphere. A warming atmosphere has the additional deleterious effect of placing stress on the systems that caused it in the first place, being energy production and agricultural practices. Thermodynamic principles show that energy production becomes less efficient as the primary heat sink (the atmosphere) increases in temperature, and agriculture becomes less efficient as the weather in which it was developed changes. This is especially critical with regard to water supply.

The problem is initiated by a small change in the composition of the atmosphere (CO2 increase), which drives secondary changes in composition (H2O).This results in changes in the climate over time. Our innovation proposes a mechanism to reverse this by modifying local weather to reduce the secondary changes (transferring H2O from the atmosphere back to the terrestrial environment).This reversal starts the remediation of the primary change (CO2 removal) by making the local environment more suitable for CO2 bio-sequestration (i.e. returning it to its ‘natural’ temperature), returning water to it and reducing cloud cover for higher rates of photosynthesis.

The atmosphere is the medium in which weather happens and climate (weather averaged over time, taking into account seasonal variation) is experienced. The sun is the primary energy source in driving the weather and it is determined by the interplay between the terrestrial, aquatic and atmospheric environs. The atmosphere has been likened to a heat engine \({[^2]}\) , with the sun being the heat source, and weather being the work output (primarily wind energy and precipitation). See Appendix II for more detail on this.

The proposal is to utilize these natural processes in order to locally supply the services of weather in a reliable and continuous manner. This will sustainably deliver a stable energy and water supply whilst also acting to transport surface heat to altitude in order to facilitate heat transport to space and offset the heat trapping effect of GHGs.

This is done by means of a specifically designed structure that harnesses the heat engine characteristics of convective uplift and the resultant gain in potential energyby rising packets of air. It includes a new innovation that allows progressive cooling of air (associated with increased available PE) in adjacent towers, overcoming the problem of having to build an impossibly high structure to achieve useful outputs. In this way it is possible to achieve the thermal conditions that occur at the top of Mount Everest by deploying a structure no taller than current architectural technology has already delivered.

[2] Sources and Sinks of Available Potential Energy #

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