More than just hot air: new app launched to explain benefits of Carbon Dioxide

A new app to explain how Carbon Dioxide (CO₂) can be used to make products, therefore lowering emissions, has been launched at COP22 in Marrakech today (Friday 11 November 2016).

co2go

The CO2GO app, developed by an academic from the University of Sheffield with the CyclicCO₂R project, challenges users to make high-value products like fuels using CO₂.

Carbon dioxide utilization (CDU) uses waste CO2 as a carbon feedstock in the production of a wide range of useful products. This provides a sustainable method of production, rather than producing chemicals from petrochemicals.

CO2 can be used to produce polymers, fuels, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, building materials and many other products.

In the app, users can make products using different sources of CO2, hydrogen and energy, switching between different EU countries to observe how their decisions affect CO2 emissions and the amount of renewable energy that would be required.

As well as explaining how CO2 can be useful instead of being perceived simply as waste and an environmentally harmful product, academics will use the app to research changes in public understanding of CO2 utilisation technologies.

Katy Armstrong from the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Sheffield and CO2CHEM Network, said: “Carbon dioxide utilisation is a quickly growing, wide field of research, however few people understand what it is and why this is an important area in reducing carbon emissions.

“Hopefully, by playing the app, they will understand the benefits that utilising CO2 can bring and understand the economic factors that can affect our energy balance.”

The app will be launched at the University of Sheffield’s event with CO2CHEM and the UK Centre for Carbon Dioxide Utilisation (CDUUK) at the United Nations Climate Change Conference: COP22 in Marrakech today (Friday 11 November 2016).