Oceans of Energy: The Oceans Are the Key to a Clean, Cool Future
Navy researchers in Key West, Florida have developed a technology to make a liquid hydrocarbon fuel out of seawater. This science fiction sounding process takes carbon dioxide (CO2) and hydrogen (H2) from seawater and converts it into a fuel. The Navy team has tested the fuel to power the combustion engine of a small radio controlled model plane that is a replica of the planes flown by the famous Red Tail Squadron in World War 2, aka, The Tuskagee Airmen. (See photo above)
Optimistically, around the world scientists and engineers are exploring ways to use the oceans to create energy with innovative wave, current and tidal power projects being developed from sea to shining sea.
It's really a no brainer to look toward the oceans as the solution to powering our needs on the land. But, no matter how many pictures we see of the Earth from space, as land dwellers it is easy to forget the vastness of the oceans - and the vast potential they have to be the key to a clean, cool future.
Luckily, besides the U.S. Navy, we have many smart people also reminding us about the importance of the ocean. These include oceans advocate Fabien Cousteau, grandson of the legendary oceans explorer Jacques Cousteau, whom, when I interviewed him at a Green Drinks NYC event, reminded me that the world was blue, in fact, not green.
I also interviewed legendary oceanographer, Sylvia Earle, who wrote a book called "The World Is Blue: How our Fate and the Oceans Are One". Despite growing up just steps from the ocean on Eastern Long Island, it was only after interviewing Sylvia and Fabien that it finally sank in, (pun intended), that our world is not so much planet earth, but planet water.
Check out this video of Navy researchers flying a radio controlled model plane with fuel made from seawater. Go Navy!