Geoengineering: Smart Science or Hail Mary?

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan B,” encompasses technologies that seek to counteract climate change. During a session at Techonomy in 2012, Harvard physicist David Keith said, “If you want to actually reduce the risks to many of the people who will suffer real climate impacts in the next decades, including some of the poorest people in the world, this is essentially the only thing you could do.”

(Image via Shutterstock)
(Image via Shutterstock)
(Image via Shutterstock)

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan B,” encompasses technologies that seek to counteract climate change. During a session at Techonomy in 2012, Harvard physicist David Keith said, “If you want to actually reduce the risks to many of the people who will suffer real climate impacts in the next decades, including some of the poorest people in the world, this is essentially the only thing you could do.” But firing sulfate particles into the atmosphere to ward off solar radiation sounds not only risky, but also so improbable as to verge on science fiction. Even the committee’s chairwoman, Marcia McNutt, told the Associated Press that public reaction to the report should be: “If this is a Hail Mary, what a scary, scary place we are in.” The report also emphasizes that geongineering should not be considered a substitute for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. An article in The New York Times reports that groups that have tried to discredit the science behind the human causes of global warming have anachronistically expressed enthusiasm for geongineering.

Related Posts
See All

Can Geo-Engineering Help Lower the Earth’s Temperature… And Cause War?

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan...

My Epiphanies at a Climate Innovation Breakfast

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan...

It’s a Wrap: 9 Ways GE Put Words Into Action at COP27

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan...

A Highly Volatile World Demands New Solutions to Navigate Risk

In a recent report, a committee appointed by the National Research Council issued a recommendation that the federal government fund research on geoengineering as a means to address global warming. Geongineering, sometimes known as “Plan...