Inunnguat - Environment
Minimal environmental impact
The Inunnguat cities must all have minimal impact on their local environment. Furthermore, they must have minimal impact on the global environment, not only during construction, but over their lifespans.
During the construction phase, significant materials imports will be required from outside the construction area. However, as much of the bulk material requirement as possible should be sourced locally. In practice this would mean using local rock for aggregate, both for roads and in concrete. Other bulk materials would be imported via ocean freighters during the short ice-free summers.
Once operational, imports would be minimal. Other than personnel transport, imports would relate to personal goods, manufactured goods, some elements and chemicals, and luxury foods. Most food would be produced on-site, as described in the “Food” section of this Proposal.
Since heat and power would be produced by nuclear or geothermal means, no regular fuel imports would be required. Furthermore, since combustion fuels would not be used, there would be no air pollution or CO2 effluent from combustion. Even if the power plant produces synthetic hydrocarbons such as methane or methanol the net effect on the environment from using those fuels would be zero.
All sewage would be processed by a local treatment facility, with the only effluents being clean water and fertilizer. The processed and sterile fertilizer would be used in the agricultural domes.
Since current technology is not good enough for completely closed systems, there will be a need for small ongoing imports of chemicals and elements that can not be reasonably sourced locally. For example, if one of the manufacturing companies produces proton exchange membranes for fuel cells, nickel or platinum would be imported. The only bulk materials needed would be water and air, both of which would be used as feed stocks for the on-site chemical industries, manufacturing, and agricultural areas. There should be no need to allow any water or chemical effluent. Intensive recycling would reduce the volume of garbage to a minimum. Even this small amount could be reduced to synthetic gas and a small amount of inert slag using plasma gasification. The synthetic gas would be a feedstock for other industries, and the slag would be used as a construction aggregate. Pyrogenesis in Montreal is a world leader in this technology.
The only remaining waste effluent is a relatively small amount of heat escaping through the fabric coverings of the domes. This is unavoidable, but very minor compared to the heat islands created by any other city.