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Climate change is defined by IPCC (2014) as “any change over time, whether due to natural
variability or human activity”. Since the mid 20th century, there has been an increasing rate
of climate change as a result of increase in CO2 due to human activity; as compared to
millennia before the 20th century (NASA, 2017).
NASA, 2017
Human activities that has caused the rapid increase in CO2 include deforestation, land use
change and the burning of fossil fuels (NASA, 2017). Since the industrial revolution began,
atmospheric CO2 has increased by more than a third (NASA, 2017).
The result of this increase in CO2 has resulted in global warming, warming of the oceans,
shrinking of ice sheets, glacial retreat, decrease snow cover, declining arctic sea ice and
acidification of ocean (NASA, 2017). According to IPCC report (2014), the effect of climate
change for various regions vary; e.g. some regions have experienced severe droughts while
other have experienced floods. This same report declared that if the rate of CO2 increase
does not reduce significantly, the atmospheric temperature will continue to increase and in
a few decades, there would be a catastrophic effect compared to the extinction of the
In order to attempt to mitigate the effects of climate change, the hierarchy of control of
hazards will be adopted to look at how CO2 can be reduced.
This looks at avoiding the emission of CO2. This can be achieved by using renewable sources
of energy such as windmill, tidal energy, hydroelectric as opposed to the use of coal and
other fossil fuels. This will also involve a complete switch to renewable energy and change
of land use and a halt to industrialization. Clearly, this will be impossible to achieve hence,
this first stage of the hierarchy of control will not be feasible.
This focuses on taking steps to reduce CO2 emission. This can be achieved by reducing the
rapid land use change, reducing waste, recycling as well as practicing sustainable farming
Administration control:
Using administration controls involve making policies, legislation and acts that will police the
emission of CO2. This will involve governments and industries setting acceptable industry
standards and ensuring that the standards are adhered to.
Engineering controls:
This involves using engineering interventions to mitigate the effect of CO2 emissions
including Carbon Sequestration.
Carbon sequestration
Carbon sequestration is the process of capturing and storing carbon dioxide in the
atmosphere into storage mediums such as in the ground or forest biomass (USGS, 2008).
(hubpages, 2016)
limitation of forest carbon storage.
Not an effective process. Although it stores up a lot co2, the difficulty in growing forest is
that when they die and rot they release co2 back into the atmosphere.
Trees take a long time to grow hence the process of co2 removal small.
Prone to infestation and diseases.
Land area
Carbon capture and storage
CCS involves the use of technology to intercept, move and store carbon dioxide emissions
from huge sources point such as power stations and manufacturing industries permanently
below ground.
It also used in high energy manufacturing industries such as steel and cement to ensure they
operate without the associated co2 emissions.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) states that CCS has the potential to reduce global
CO2 by 19% and without CCS, climate change could cost 70% more.
3 processes involved
Pre-combustion capture
Post-combustion capture
Oxy-fuel combustion systems
Transportation involve the transfer of the captured co2 to the appropriate site. This is usually
done by pipes or ships.
Co2 is injected at high temperature and pressure in liquid into porous geological
The process is called structural storage. It is the same process that natural gas and oil has
been trapped in earth formation for millions of years.
Forest do hold a lot of carbon in its biomass. However, with current rate of anthropogenic
emission of co2, afforestation alone would not be an effective way to deal with the climate.
The use of fossils for energy production accounts for a significant part of global energy
demand. It is therefore important to revolutionised energy production by eliminating the co2
from source by promoting the geoengineering technology of carbon capture and storage.