Geoengineering Set To Change Life On Earth

Phytoplankton in South Atlantic

Oceanic phytoplankton bloom in the South Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Argentina.

Why is it that some of the best human minds are so focused on what they can achieve in the name of science that they seldom contemplate whether or not they are helping or hurting our ability to exist on planet Earth?

In a lengthy story for USA Today, Dan Vergano reveals the many and varied plans of scientists at the forefront of geoengineering plans for our fragile mother:

Scientists call it “geoengineering,” but in plain speak, it means things like this: blasting tons of sulfate particles into the sky to reflect sunlight away from Earth; filling the ocean with iron filings to grow plankton that will suck up carbon; even dimming sunlight with space shades.

Each brings its own set of risks, but in a world fretting about the consequences of global warming, are these ideas whose time has come?

With 2010 tying as the world’s warmest year on record and efforts to slow greenhouse gas emissions looking stymied, calls are rising for research into engineering our way out of global warming — everything from launching solar shade spacecraft to genetically engineering green deserts. An international consortium of 12 universities and research institutes on Tuesday, for example, announced plans to pioneer large-scale “ocean fertilization” experiments aimed at using the sea to pull more greenhouse gases out of the sky.

Once the domain of scientists’ off-hours schemes scrawled on cocktail napkins, such geoengineering is getting a serious look in the political realm.

“We’re moving into a different kind of world,” says environmental economist Scott Barrett of Columbia University. “Better we turn to asking if ‘geoengineering’ could work, than waiting until it becomes a necessity.”

A National Academy of Sciences’ best estimate has global warming bumping up average temperatures by 3 to 7 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century. Meanwhile, greenhouse gas emissions that are largely responsible, most from burning the modern economy’s main fuels, coal and oil, look set to continue to rise for the next quarter-century, according to Energy Information Agency estimates.
“That’s where geoengineering comes in,” says international relations expert David Victor of the University of California-San Diego. “Research into geoengineering creates another option for the public.”

Geoengineering takes its cue from the natural experiment that actually had made the only dent in global warming’s rise in the last two decades — the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, which blasted more than 15 million tons of sulfur dioxide 21 miles high, straight into the stratosphere. The stratosphere suspended those sulfur particles in the air worldwide, where the haze they created scattered and reflected sunlight away from the Earth and cooled global atmospheric temperatures nearly 0.7 to 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit in 1992 and 1993, before finally washing out, according to NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies estimates. Firing about half that much sulfur into the stratosphere every year for 30 years would help stabilize global warming’s rise, National Center for Atmospheric Research climate scientist Tom Wigley estimated in a much-debated 2006 Science journal report.

Humanity would effectively become addicted to sky-borne sulfates to keep the cooling on track…

, , , ,

  • UncleB

    If the Geo-engineers F@#$@k up we will all suffer! Start collecting names and addresses for the lynch mobs, just in case!

    • jb

      By the time anyone starts seriously suggesting this stuff, there will be around a billion climate refugees fleeing their burned and flooded countries. Rounding up a lynch mob will probably be pretty easy. But as a computer using English speaker with a place to sleep at night, you might not have as easy a time staying out of the mob’s hands.

      • Pinkelephantcollective

        Sources zota? Why would there be climate change refugees from AGW? AGW has been thoroughly discredited as a source of catastrophic climate change.

        • jb

          You re right, of course. Everything is normal. Everything is fine. These fires, these droughts, these floods — they are normal. They are not happening. Relax. It is all under control. Remain calm. There is nothing wrong. Please remain calm There is no reason to panic. This is all perfectly normal. Go about your business. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. This is all perfectly normal.

        • Anarchy Pony

          No, it has not.

  • Anonymous

    If the Geo-engineers F@#$@k up we will all suffer! Start collecting names and addresses for the lynch mobs, just in case!

  • http://www.sacredgeometryinternational.com/ Sacred Geometry International

    Unfortunately the excuse given for allowing these mad scientist type exploits is the known fraud of “Global Warming” “With 2010 tying as the world’s warmest year on record” Umm care to substantiate this? Have we forgotten Climate Gate so quickly? For anyone who wants to make the time here is a great presentation pointing out the fallacy of the assumptions of the IPCC. A governmental body formed exclusively to determine that AGW is a threat.

    http://www.realitysandwich.com/video/climate_change_1

    Guess I have to brush up on my climate change debunking again, it seems to be they are trying again to fool us into carbon credit schemes as well as….

    And one more link for those skeptical of Al Gore’s aborted Kuato.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/

    • jb

      Remain calm. The weather you are experiencing is a fraud. This is all perfectly normal. Nothing is wrong. Everything is fine. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. There are no droughts. There are no floods. There are no fires. Nothing is wrong. Return to your homes. Remain calm. Everything is under control.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Camron-Wiltshire/510662346 Camron Wiltshire

    Unfortunately the excuse given for allowing these mad scientist type exploits is the known fraud of “Global Warming” “With 2010 tying as the world’s warmest year on record” Umm care to substantiate this? Have we forgotten Climate Gate so quickly? For anyone who wants to make the time here is a great presentation pointing out the fallacy of the assumptions of the IPCC. A governmental body formed exclusively to determine that AGW is a threat.

    http://www.realitysandwich.com/video/climate_change_1

    Guess I have to brush up on my climate change debunking again, it seems to be they are trying again to fool us into carbon credit schemes as well as….

    And one more link for those skeptical of Al Gore’s aborted Kuato.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/

  • jb

    The only way this stuff might happen is if we were seeing clear evidence of catastrophic climate change, like record floods, record, droughts, record fires, record rains, record snows, record temperatures, unprecidented weather patterns…

    But since NONE of that stuff is actually happening, there’s NOTHING to worry about. You are safe and secure. Everything is perfectly normal. This is all perfectly normal. It is not actually happening. Everything is perfectly normal.

    • Andrew

      That’s right. And there is no Asian Brown Cloud, no Great Pacific Garbage Patch, nor worldwide deforestation to cause it.

      • jb

        Those things are human actions. They cannot be having an effect on global climate. The effect is not happening. Nothing is happening. Everything is perfectly normal. There are no floods. There are no droughts. This is normal. This is natural. Everything is fine.

        • Andrew

          Exactly right. We cannot have any effect on the environment any more than the environment can have any effect on us.

          • jb

            It is true — humans cannot have any effect on the environment.

            Geoengineering is not possible. Anthropogenic change is not possible. It is not happening. Nothing is happening. This is all perfectly normal. This is natural. Return to your homes. Remain calm. It is not happening. Everything is under control.

  • Anonymous

    The only way this stuff might happen is if we were seeing clear evidence of catastrophic climate change, like record floods, record, droughts, record fires, record rains, record snows, record temperatures, unprecidented weather patterns…

    But since NONE of that stuff is actually happening, there’s NOTHING to worry about. You are safe and secure. Everything is perfectly normal. This is all perfectly normal. It is not actually happening. Everything is perfectly normal.

  • Anonymous

    By the time anyone starts seriously suggesting this stuff, there will be around a billion climate refugees fleeing their burned and flooded countries. Rounding up a lynch mob will probably be pretty easy. But as a computer using English speaker with a place to sleep at night, you might not have as easy a time staying out of the mob’s hands.

  • Anonymous

    By the time anyone starts seriously suggesting this stuff, there will be around a billion climate refugees fleeing their burned and flooded countries. Rounding up a lynch mob will probably be pretty easy. But as a computer using English speaker with a place to sleep at night, you might not have as easy a time staying out of the mob’s hands.

  • http://www.facebook.com/hazar.worth HZar Worth

    This bogus and dubious con called ‘Global Warming’ continues to create money-making schemes which will have MORE harm on the sensibilities of the masses (called ‘ignorance’ and ‘fear’) than the so-called ‘climate disasters’ predicted by those so-called ‘educated scientific minds’…..

    Many people need to wake up, and STOP being lazy, apathetic, gullible fools easily duped and easily fooled.by this bogus psuedo-science created to create profits and bottom-lines…

    • jb

      Do not believe the scientists. They are trying to frighten you. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. Do not panic. There are no floods. There are no droughts. There are no fires. Remain calm Return to your homes. Do not believe the scientists. Nothing is wrong. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Nothing is wrong. Everything is fine. Do not panic. Return to your homes.

      • Andrew

        Scientists lie because they profit from it. Corporations, fortunately, have higher motives.

        • jb

          Indeed. Do not trust the scientists.

          Trust the oil corporations. Trust the coal-fired power plant owners. They only want what is best for you. Trust the Koch brothers. Trust Fox News. They only want to protect you. Do not trust the scientists. They are trying to deceive you with science.

          Science is lies. Corporations are truth. Everything is normal. Return to your homes. Nothing is happening. This is all perfectly normal.

    • Andrew
  • http://www.facebook.com/hazar.worth HZar Worth

    This bogus and dubious con called ‘Global Warming’ continues to create money-making schemes which will have MORE harm on the sensibilities of the masses (called ‘ignorance’ and ‘fear’) than the so-called ‘climate disasters’ predicted by those so-called ‘educated scientific minds’…..

    Many people need to wake up, and STOP being lazy, apathetic, gullible fools easily duped and easily fooled.by this bogus psuedo-science created to create profits and bottom-lines…

  • http://www.facebook.com/hazar.worth HZar Worth

    This bogus and dubious con called ‘Global Warming’ continues to create money-making schemes which will have MORE harm on the sensibilities of the masses (called ‘ignorance’ and ‘fear’) than the so-called ‘climate disasters’ predicted by those so-called ‘educated scientific minds’…..

    Many people need to wake up, and STOP being lazy, apathetic, gullible fools easily duped and easily fooled.by this bogus psuedo-science created to create profits and bottom-lines…

  • Pinkelephantcollective

    Sources zota? Why would there be climate change refugees from AGW? AGW has been thoroughly discredited as a source of catastrophic climate change.

  • Anonymous

    You re right, of course. Everything is normal. Everything is fine. These fires, these droughts, these floods — they are normal. They are not happening. Relax. It is all under control. Remain calm. There is nothing wrong. Please remain calm There is no reason to panic. This is all perfectly normal. Go about your business. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. This is all perfectly normal.

  • Anonymous

    Remain calm. The weather you are experiencing is a fraud. This is all perfectly normal. Nothing is wrong. Everything is fine. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. There are no droughts. There are no floods. There are no fires. Nothing is wrong. Return to your homes. Remain calm. Everything is under control.

  • Anonymous

    Do not believe the scientists. They are trying to frighten you. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Everything is under control. Do not panic. There are no floods. There are no droughts. There are no fires. Remain calm Return to your homes. Do not believe the scientists. Nothing is wrong. Remain calm. Return to your homes. Nothing is wrong. Everything is fine. Do not panic. Return to your homes.

  • WhiteRose

    Something tells me WWIII is going to beat them to this….

  • WhiteRose

    Something tells me WWIII is going to beat them to this….

  • Andrew

    That’s right. And there is no Asian Brown Cloud, no Great Pacific Garbage Patch, nor worldwide deforestation to cause it.

  • Andrew
  • Anonymous

    Those things are human actions. They cannot be having an effect on global climate. The effect is not happening. Nothing is happening. Everything is perfectly normal. There are no floods. There are no droughts. This is normal. This is natural. Everything is fine.

  • Andrew

    Exactly right. We cannot have any effect on the environment any more than the environment can have any effect on us.

  • Andrew

    Scientists lie because they profit from it. Corporations, fortunately, have higher motives.

  • Anonymous

    Indeed. Do not trust the scientists.

    Trust the oil corporations. Trust the coal-fired power plant owners. They only want what is best for you. Trust the Koch brothers. Trust Fox News. They only want to protect you. Do not trust the scientists. They are trying to deceive you with science.

    Science is lies. Corporations are truth. Everything is normal. Return to your homes. Nothing is happening. This is all perfectly normal.

  • Anonymous

    It is true — humans cannot have any effect on the environment.

    Geoengineering is not possible. Anthropogenic change is not possible. It is not happening. Nothing is happening. This is all perfectly normal. This is natural. Return to your homes. Remain calm. It is not happening. Everything is under control.

  • Anonymous

    Geoengineering is nothing more than illusion to allow even more pollution. Corporations will profit from the pollution they generate and then demand more money from the government to clean it up.
    Now add the fact that none of the geoengineering techniques do anything about the other pollutants generated by burning fossil fuels. Now add in Monsanto and other disastrous bioengineering open air experiments and catastrophe is guaranteed.
    They are already pushing the bounds of what the general population will accept, will it take lynch mobs targeted at the rich and greedy for them to back off, for them to realise there is a limit to how far they push the general population.
    Marketing and public relations, even with total control of corporate controlled mass media is starting to fail to keep the masses lulled in the face of reality, they are starting to push back and it will inevitably get more violent should they rich and greedy fail the accept the limitations of the numerical inferiority, they are outnumbered tens of thousands to one.

  • rtb61

    Geoengineering is nothing more than illusion to allow even more pollution. Corporations will profit from the pollution they generate and then demand more money from the government to clean it up.
    Now add the fact that none of the geoengineering techniques do anything about the other pollutants generated by burning fossil fuels. Now add in Monsanto and other disastrous bioengineering open air experiments and catastrophe is guaranteed.
    They are already pushing the bounds of what the general population will accept, will it take lynch mobs targeted at the rich and greedy for them to back off, for them to realise there is a limit to how far they push the general population.
    Marketing and public relations, even with total control of corporate controlled mass media is starting to fail to keep the masses lulled in the face of reality, they are starting to push back and it will inevitably get more violent should they rich and greedy fail the accept the limitations of the numerical inferiority, they are outnumbered tens of thousands to one.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TEF5PM4FCTGL6ANXGXVR7HEOXU Lili Lin

    welcome to:
    http://www.ppshopping.us/

    Air jordan(1-24)shoes $30

    Handbags(Coach l v f e n d i d&g) $35

    Tshirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $15

    Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $30

    Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,A r m a i n i) $15

    New era cap $12

    Bikini (Ed hardy,polo) $20

    accept paypal and free shipping

    http://www.ppshopping.us/

    http://www.ppshopping.us/

    http://www.ppshopping.us/
    http://www.ppshopping.us/

    http://www.ppshopping.us/

  • Nano_Thermite_911

    2 Zota:
    Are you capable of phrasing your arguments utilizing the scientific authoritarianism you eristically recite?
    In other words please consider there could be more to the story. If you cannot effectively argue your point, please spare everyone your meaningless responses.

  • Nano_Thermite_911

    2 Zota:
    Are you capable of phrasing your arguments utilizing the scientific authoritarianism you eristically recite?
    In other words please consider there could be more to the story. If you cannot effectively argue your point, please spare everyone your meaningless responses.

    • jb

      I’ll take eristic dialectic over corporate solipsism, any day.

      Remain calm. Nothing is wrong. Everything is normal. Everything is under control…

  • Anonymous

    I’ll take eristic dialectic over corporate solipsism, any day.

    Remain calm. Nothing is wrong. Everything is normal. Everything is under control…

  • Gold. Is. Useless.

    No, it has not.