Today, the lifestyle of industrial civilization is based primarily on the massive use of non-renewable and polluting, whose only advantage is its high energy efficiency. Western society imposed a lifestyle characterized by waste, that is, unnecessary use and misuse of the material and energy resources. The consumer society leads people to expend energy in irrational and unnecessary objects continuously acquire and of short duration, which also require excessive energy expenditure both for manufacturing and for its operation. The unprecedented demand for resources and ecosystem change are producing an ever-accelerating deterioration in the ability of environment to sustain life (O'Riordan, 2000). The major environmental problems include:
The air pollution and soil waters discharge from industrial and agricultural waste. The most serious effects are: the global warming of the atmosphere (greenhouse effect), due to the emission of gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and CFSS) which absorb light reflected from the Earth's surface and, by the action of chemicals based on chlorine and bromine, which allows a greater penetration of ultraviolet rays until its surface (Stanley, 1999).
Since the oil crisis of the 70's, developed countries began to be aware that they should seek other sources of energy not be exhausted and therefore were not subject to market fluctuations. The depletion of energy resources will require a substantial change in current production quotas of the different conventional energy sources. Oil will remain the dominant fuel in the first half of this century. After gradually be replaced by gas, which has the greatest potential for growth of fossil fuels. While maintaining ample reserves, coal will not increase their current market shares for its significant environmental impact. The nuclear fission, which is contrary to public opinion, no longer used in developed countries, although it may remain in developing countries. It is expected that hydropower and other renewable will be able not only to compensate the decrease of the energy supplied by fossil fuels, but also satisfactorily meet the expected increase in power consumption of future societies (O'Brien & Leichenko, 2003).
An additional impetus for study of these hypotheses has been the geoengineering proposal ?rst articulated by Martin et al. (1990a) and Martin et al. (1990b) to arti?cially fertilize the ocean with iron as a way of removing CO2 from the atmosphere. Studies of this issue have centered primarily on determining: (1) the ef?ciency of the fertilization; (2) the veri?ability of CO2 removal from the atmosphere; and (3) the long term environmental consequences of the fertilization (cf. Chisholm et al., 2001; and Buesseler et al., 2008). This paper is primarily about the underlying scienti?c issues regarding the ef?ciency of fertilization, but before proceeding, we note that the potential environmental consequences of extensive iron fertilization alone are suf?cient to give serious pause to anyone seriously considering this as an option for CO2 removal, as discussed by Chisholm et al. (2001), Jin and Gruber (2003), Schiermeier (2003), Shepherd (2009), and Strong et al. (2009) among ...