The topic of geoengineering the climate continues to break into the mainstream as climate engineers debated the controversial topic at the latest TED talks in Vancouver.
The annual TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) conference is designed to facilitate conversation around "ideas worth spreading." Founded in 1984, the TED organization distributes free talks related to technology, design, science, culture, and academia.
The annual TED conference in Vancouver, Canada, TED Global, and regional TEDx events are increasingly celebrated and consumed by a growing portion of the world thanks to the viral spread of popular talks.
The topics are occasionally controversial - sometimes leading to them being banned by TED - and this years conference in Vancouver was no exception.
At the 2017 TED talks, several speakers discussed the almost-mainstream idea of geoengineering the planet to combat climate change.
Business Insider reported:
The science of geoengineering has increasingly become a part of the public conversation around climate change and an ever-controversial topic within the scientific community.
Geoengineering is a type of weather modification (or climate engineering) which has been researched, but, until recently, has been considered too unpredictable to attempt on a large scale.
According to a 2013 congressional report:
Hillis told the audience at TED 2017 that in order to "undo the effects of the CO2 we've already released" we would have to put chalk in the sky at a rate of 10 teragrams a year.
Once Hillis finished singing the praises of geoengineering, climate scientist Kate Marvel was give a chance to respond.
Marvel is an associate research scientist at Columbia University, as well as a Science Fellow at Stanford.
Marvel also stated that reducing the amount of sunlight is "problematic" and would not do anything about other environmental dangers, such as ocean acidification.
Marvel was followed by another call for geoengineering from University of Oxford researcher Tim Kruger.
The King of Global Warming Doomsday Prophecies himself, Al Gore, said that geoengineering could be a possible time in the future, but not as the only solution.
Marvel is correct that the consequences of geoengineering are not currently known.
However, there have been a number of studies which have lead to disastrous possibilities. Most recently, in late October 2016, the United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity released a report examining the problems of geoengineering and whether or not humanity will be forced to employ the practice in an attempt to halt climate change.
The report, On Climate Geoengineering in relation to the Convention on Biological Diversity - Potential Impacts and Regulatory Framework, found that geoengineering,
...but also cause unpredictable rain and temperature distribution on the local level.
The U.N. report states that the effectiveness of geoengineering is "uncertain" and,
Dr. Phillip Williamson, lead author of the report and scientist with the Natural Environment Research Council in the United Kingdom, says he is skeptical of geoengineering.
The U.N. concludes that although Solar Radiation Management may possibly slow the loss of Arctic sea ice, but not without,
One particular method of SRM involves injecting aerosols into the atmosphere via airplanes.
The study found that the use of sulphur aerosols for SRM would be associated with a risk of stratospheric ozone loss. There is also a risk that stratospheric aerosol injection (SAI) would have a small impact on climate change but could lead to negative impacts on biodiversity.
The geoengineering TED talks were preceded by a concerning announcement from Harvard related to an upcoming real-world climate engineering experiment.
At the recent "Forum on Solar Geoengineering Research," Harvard engineer (and consistent proponent of climate engineering) David Keith announced his plan for a new project that will assess the risks and benefits of deploying geoengineering on a large public scale.
Keith and fellow engineer, Frank Keutsch, will research the benefits and risks by spraying particles such as sulfur dioxide, alumina, or calcium carbonate from a high-altitude balloon over Arizona during 2018.
Keith said there will be a multi-phase plan for research and conducting real-world testing within the next 18 months. Keith also called for stratospheric spraying within three years and continuous spraying for at least a century...
Technology Review reports that Keith said his team is already in the process of,
The very notion of unilateral geoengineering means that other countries could face potential risks.
This creates a need for new governance structures, or possibly, 'a global government.'
This makes the Trump administration's support for geoengineering curious since President Trump has been very outspoken against "globalists."
Yet again, the U.S. government is planning to enact a possibly dangerous, untested technology on not only the American population, but the entire world.
There are realistic solutions that do not involve edicts from states and statists.
If the free hearts and minds of this world - the free humans - recognize the opportunity for a radical change in individual behavior we could erase the unsustainable, destructive industries that damage the planet and all life.
If we choose to stand by and not change our own habits and communities, we are giving the state the impetus to act. We are sending the message that the people cannot organize and accomplish goals based on mutual aid.
It's time to stand together in defense of the life on this planet.