Comment on an article discussion about extracting bio-oil from biomass to use in fueling ships:
I am supportive, but cautiously.
Questions to form opinion:
* What will they do to replenish 100% of the minerals that are removed from those forests?
* What will this do to remove more CO2 from the atmosphere over time than it deposits?
Explanation of the questions:
* Forests of Norway do not generally have a biological/geological mechanism to replenish the nutrients removed through logging or biomass removal. Therefor sustainability requires an accounting of how much is removed and a requirement that upon cycling the same account of minerals be put back into that forest ecosystem. If not the biology of the forest will be slowly reduced in mass while the oceans will increase in salinity transferring the biology from the land to the oceans. Since we like the balance we inherited, we don’t want deserts on land and mass algae growth in oceans, hence the need for mineral accounting. Under less mindful oversight, harvest of biomass occurs and the contributors (that forest) stand with their hands outstretched in increasing poverty while mineral resources eventually end up in the sea.
2.) along with harvest of biomass comes harvest of total biology including Carbon, which in this case is turned into oil. When oil is burned it propels a ship while transferring the Carbon into the atmosphere to increase atmospheric CO2. Without a longer story line this actually gains the world community nothing but more imbalance. There are technologies of energy extraction from biomass that leave 30% (more or less) in Carbon skeletal structure called char. When slated for and skillfully used in farming and land stewardship, this char can synergize biological systems to produce exponential increases in terrestrial Carbon thus potentially offsetting more CO2 in the atmosphere than is used to propel the ship for example. Under less mindful combustion a resource is harvested and the contributors (that forest) stand with their hands outstretched in increasing poverty while Carbonaceous resources are sent to the sky.