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Frigid waters off Antarctica marine biologists are testing a controversial technique to fight climate change.
There have been twelve or so experiments where.
Scientists have gone out and put iron in the ocean to see it it -- to watch the effects and in all cases.
They stimulated productivity.
Algae and plankton thrive on iron and like all plants absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Eventually these algae blooms die and sink storing the greenhouse gas on the ocean floor for a hundred years or more.
Scientists calculate that a pound of -- could extract up to fifty tons of CO2 from the atmosphere.
And that fertilizing vast stretches of empty ocean with an iron sulfate.
Could remove up to 30% of greenhouse gas emissions but some environmentalists say there are too many unanswered questions about potential consequences.
For instance affecting organisms that feet on the plankton blooms.
We -- all the way after the top of the food chain within the top predators and then the fish on the weeks and we might end up messing up this council together.
Rather than trying to GO engineer ecosystems says Greenpeace we need to focus on reducing our global warming pollution which we can begin today.
But with the money making potential behind selling carbon offsets companies like Dan wait -- -- most are looking to expand ocean fertilization right away.
As these projects get bigger.
They'll be considerably more complex to run.
More expensive to finance so.
There is really a role for a company to provide.
Is and the solution.
Not for everything but could play a role may be.
The scientific community is still figuring out if iron fertilization works as there is a recent data to suggest that carbon dioxide leaks right back into the atmosphere.
And companies looking to turn the process into profit will need to convince critics and regulators that tinkering with the ocean's ecosystem won't do more harm than good.
In San Francisco Claudia Cowan Fox News.
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