Author Topic: Geoengineering  (Read 30 times)

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Offline Soldier of FORTRAN

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Geoengineering
« on: January 26, 2020, 11:08:24 PM »
The stigma's fading and interest's growing. 

Article: NOAA Gets Go-Ahead to Study Controversial Climate Plan B
From: Scientific American
Date: 2020 JAN 23

Quote
The top climate change scientist for NOAA said he has received $4 million from Congress and permission from his agency to study two emergency—and controversial—methods to cool the Earth if the U.S. and other nations fail to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.

David Fahey, director of the Chemical Sciences Division of NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory, told his staff yesterday that the federal government is ready to examine the science behind “geoengineering”—or what he dubbed a “Plan B” for climate change.

Fahey said he has received backing to explore two approaches.

One is to inject sulfur dioxide or a similar aerosol into the stratosphere to help shade the Earth from more intense sunlight. It is patterned after a natural solution: volcanic eruptions, which have been found to cool the Earth by emitting huge clouds of sulfur dioxide.

The second approach would use an aerosol of sea salt particles to improve the ability of low-lying clouds over the ocean to act as shade.

This technique is borrowed from “ship tracks”—or long clouds left by the passage of ocean freighters that are seen by satellites as reflective pathways. They could be widened by injections of vapor from seawater by specialized ships to create shading effects.

Research in both techniques, Fahey emphasized, are recommended in a forthcoming study by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine titled “Climate Intervention Strategies that Reflect Sunlight to Cool Earth.”

...

The, "Plan B," framing throws me.  Going forward, I expect geoengineering to become a component of broader mitigation and adaptation strategies.  It's, "this and," rather than, "either or."  Geoengineering is not a 'Silver Bullet' so it won't obviate everything else -- emissions reductions and so on.

And I expect it's coming whether the field's mature or not.  Climate Change will hit hard.  We will hit every angle we can and this will be one of them. 

Ideally, there'd be much more support.  Geoengineering does not yet exist as a field.  Federal support will be necessary to bootstrap the field but $4m's better than nothing.  And we need to get started in earnest.  We don't know how what works, what doesn't, etc.  We don't have frameworks for diplomacy, regulation, governance, enforcement, etc.
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Geoengineering
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2020, 11:17:01 PM »
What could possibly go wrong?  ::)
Daniel
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