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Microwaving trees could combat climate change

Microwaving trees could combat climate change

Microwaving trees and burying them could help keep carbon dioxide from getting into the atmosphere and contributing to climate change, a scientist has said.

As trees grow they absorb the greenhouse gas, and when they die, or are burned they release it again.

However, professor Chris Turney of the University of Exeter claims that by microwaving the mature tree and turning it into charcoal, the CO2 becomes more stable and can be locked away for thousands of years.

Speaking to the Guardian he suggested that fast-growing trees could be farmed to absorb CO2 and then treated before being buried.

He said that the technique could remove billions of tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere and he has the support of Nasa's James Hansen.

A report from Swedish energy firm Vatenfall claimed that re-afforestation of some 930 million hectares of degraded land could lead to the absorption of 21.6 billion tonnes of CO2 per year.

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