Skip to comments.Blue Sky Tinkering (Wacky Ways To Control Global Warming)
Posted on 09/16/2006 7:46:02 PM PDT by blam
Blue sky tinkering
(Filed: 17/09/2006)Page 1 of 5
Scientists fighting global warming are now considering wacky ways of deliberately manipulating the environment to control the world's climate. Philip Sherwell in New York reports on the schemes that were once dismissed as the work of crackpots
Trillions of tiny sunshades orbiting in space; a mirror 150 miles high stationed between Earth and the sun; clouds sprayed with seawater; planes pumping sulphates into the stratosphere. They may sound to a layman like the weird and wacky fantasies of an eccentric bunch of boffins, but such ambitious plans for cooling the planet are now rapidly gaining credibility in the querulous world of climate science.
These futuristic and controversial approaches to combating global warming are known as geoengineering the manipulation of the global environment to counter climatic change. It is a word of which the world will doubtless be hearing much more as a once-obscure strand of science takes centre stage in the debate about the future of the planet.
advertisementAttention has long focused on the heated arguments about why the planet is warming is it because of man, cyclical trends or both? Now a small but growing band of scientists, previously viewed as heretics even within their narrow specialism, are saying that the time is looming for emergency action and the world cannot wait for the row over the causes of climate change to be settled.
"Ideas that might have been seen as totally wacky even a year ago are now being actively considered," said Dr Roger Angel, a leading British astronomer and Fellow of the Royal Society. Based at the University of Arizona, he has proposed putting trillions of small lenses wafer-thin, light as a butterfly and two-foot wide into orbit to deflect sunlight.
Wallace Broecker, a pioneer of geoengineering at Columbia University, could not find an outlet to publish his research papers in the 1980s. Now be believes the mood is changing. "Geoengineering offers the prospect of an insurance policy. It could buy us some breathing space while we decide how to capture and get rid of carbon dioxide and reduce emissions," he said.
"But the reality is that conservation and alternative energy sources are never going to solve the whole problem. We need to look for other solutions. For too long, we have been talking and debating and time has been slipping by."
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The Telegraph just keeps getting nuttier and nuttier. They're making American tabloids look respectable.
Sounds like they're searching for a way to impose a global tax, to pay for such hare-brained schemes...
How sick is that?
Who leaked one of Karl Rove's secrets?
While doing research for a centennial, I came across an article out of the 1920s where an inventer was predicting that in the future, people would travel across the earth by pedaling inside of large steel balls. The image simply cracked me up. These schemes remind me of that.
Back when global cooling was all the rage the call was to spread dark materials on the glaciers to get them to melt.