Worms, bacteria and fungi help reduce carbon dioxide emissions


Thomas Corbett

Can we use the Earth's own natural thermostat and accelerate the process to help reduce global warming? Promising progress has been made in the research project BAM (Bio-Accelerated Mineral Weathering). With the help of worms, bacteria and fungi researchers are trying to make stone weather faster and in this way capture carbon dioxide.

Weathering is the process by which stone is mechanically or chemically broken down to gravel, sand, clay and ions. These ions can then react with each other and precipitate out as new minerals and rocks. In this way carbon dioxide can be bound in limestone, and this is what the researchers behind BAM are trying to achieve.

“On a geological time-scale, the weathering of silicate minerals has helped to regulate the Earth's temperature. We are trying to enhance these processes as they naturally occur too slowly. That's the idea behind this technology,” explains Thomas Corbett, postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Earth Sciences.

Promising results

By mixing specially chosen organisms with crushed stone and hay in a sealed container, researchers have already shown promising results and have managed to double the rate of weathering. This rate still needs to be increased many times over in order to be truly effective.

Read the full article at uu.se; "Worms, bacteria and fungi help reduce carbon dioxide emissions". 

BAM (Bio Accelerated Mineral Weathering) is an interdisciplinary co-operation between Uppsala University, Universität Hamburg and Wageningen University and Research. The project is funded by the European Innovation Council. Read more about the project BAM

For more information contact:
​Anna Neubeck:

E-mail: anna.neubeck@geo.uu.se
Telephone: 018-471 2562
Thomas Corbett
: Email: thomas.corbett@geo.uu.se

News from the Department of Earth Sciences

Last modified: 2022-09-30