“Well, maybe not. Geo-engineering isn’t the easy and painless fix for climate change that many proponents say it is,” says Mark Buchanan, physicist and author, former editor with Nature and New Scientist, at Medium:
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Harvard engineering professor David Keith is a big proponent of geo-engineering — using technology to save the planet from climate change. Maybe we’ll do some Solar Radiation Management (SRM) by injecting sulfate aerosols at high altitudes to “turn down the sun,” reducing the amount of its radiation hitting the Earth’s surface. Or we might instead find ways to suck the CO2 we’ve put into the atmosphere back out and pump it into the ground.
To be sure, Keith thinks that the first and most important thing we can do to tackle climate change is to reduce CO2 emissions, but he thinks it would be crazy to be against exploring these other options as “Plan B.” Indeed, he has an analogy:
Imagine a doctor refusing to administer chemotherapy to a stage III lung-cancer patient out of fear that it would reduce his incentive to cut his smoking habit from two packs to one pack a day.