Researchers look to geoengineer a way out of global warming

Researchers look to geoengineer a way out of global warmingIn spite of the imaginings of climate deniers, the world is getting warmer with potentially catastrophic consequences. As politicians dither, climate researchers are not only talking about the weather, but also are considering doing something about it. They are exploring geoengineering solutions to mitigate global warming. But does the risk of geoengineering outweigh its benefits?

So what is geoengineering? Geoengineering can be defined into two broad categories: technologies that absorb carbon dioxide and address the root cause of global warming, and technologies that reduce solar radiation and address the effect of global warming.

Obviously, addressing the root cause of global warming is preferred. Simply planting more trees to absorb CO2 is a benign form of geoengineering that poses little risk. The problem with such a solution is that it might be too late to affect the rising temperature in reasonable timeframe. A more invasive method is to seed the oceans with iron. This would increase the production of phytoplankton, which, like forestation, would sequester carbon. But such changes of ocean chemistry could kill fish and produce other greenhouse gases such as methane.

Instead of reducing carbon dioxide, other technologies could be used to cool the planet by decreasing the solar radiation. One solution – inspired by the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines that cooled global temperature nearly 1 degree in 1992 and 1993 – is to fire sulfates into the atmosphere. Mount Pinatubo emitted more than 15 million tons of sulfur dioxide. According to calculations by National Center for Atmospheric Research climate scientist Tom Wigley, “firing about half that much sulfur into the stratosphere every year for 30 years would help stabilize global warming's rise.” This solution, however, would not address other issues with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, such as ocean acidification. Moreover, the long-term health and environmental effects of permanently suspending sulfur dioxide in the stratosphere are simply unknown.

The best way to tackle global warming is to quit burning fossil fuels. But for practical and political reasons, substantial reductions in fossil fuel usage are unlikely. Geoengineering may offer solutions to some of the immediate effects of global warming, but its long-term ramifications could outweigh any benefits. Additionally, the availability of such solutions could increase complacency about reducing fossil fuel consumption. Like an obese person who wants a diet pill instead of doing the hard work of eating healthy and exercising, our addiction to oil and natural gas is motivating the search for a quick fix. Unfortunately, at this stage in the game, we may have little choice.


Geoengineering is a crime against all of humanity so Why do U promote it

here it comes, selling geo-engineering to us under the guise of "preventing global warming".  well i'll have none of that thank you very much.  I dont want millions of tons of aluminum dumped on me, in fact, i dont really want any planes spraying anything in the sky, because i dont trust these govts that are racing towards a new world order.  I think it should be a crime to spray ANYTHING in massive amounts in the sky.  wake up america, this is a crime against all of us.  dont buy into this "prevent's global warming" crap, it's all a big hoax, and the joke's on us.  duck fat!!!


Well, injecting greenhouse gasses into the air from carbon combustion- has been our great geoengineering experiement.   It worked.   We put it in, it got hot, and unstable, -- now all we have to do is completely halt all carbon emissions and we should be good as new in no time.   Well maybe a few decades.

Halt all carbon emissions, we proved it is the best geoengineering of all.   It will work.