Fragment 1 - Power at all Costs

"Today, we change history."

"A little dramatic, aren't we?" Kate asked.

Aaron Coplin shrugged, running a hand through his curly blonde hair. He was tall with piercing blue eyes and chiseled features, thirty years old and wearing it well. Kate Finzer was diminutive with short wavy hair, black skin, and brown eyes. They had been friends for as long as either of them could remember.

"If this works, we'll reshape the global warming crises. Imagine how much things will change when carbon dioxide isn't increasing the greenhouse effect."

"We're a long way from fixing anything," Kate said. "We don't even know if this will work."

"It'll work," Aaron said. He looked at Kate and smiled. "It has to."

She wished she could share his enthusiasm. He was the lead geologist on the project and had picked the location: sandstone formations to enclose the liquid-gas hybrid CO2. It had taken months of digital scans to verify that this location would work and months further to install all of the turbines which the CO2 would power.

Kate worked with the engineering team to implement the design; they would push supercritical CO2 into the ground. They had run countless simulations, testing the pressure and temperature so that when they turned the system on it would work safely, but there were too many unknowns to be completely safe.

Millions of gallons of supercritical CO2 would be pumped into salt brine. The liquid would expand and drive turbines which would create heat and pressure: eventually it would be converted to energy. It wasn't a difficult process, but each step along the way was critical: a single misstep would spiral out of control.