Global warming is not new to climate scientists, nor is the knowledge of the cause of it; in fact, “97% of experts in the scientific community agree that climate change is anthropogenic in other words, directly linked to human activity.” (Geo-Engineering, 0:13) More directly put, the emission of carbon dioxide created by the burning of fossil fuels from cars, factories, and electricity has a sizable impact on Earth’s natural climate with no outside influences. This impact brings into question two things: how can we reduce our carbon emissions, or two, is it possible to keep our current lifestyle and find a system that will combat or neutralize these emissions. As climate change is not a new concept to many people, the first instinct was to attempt to reduce carbon emissions in a personal capacity; some companies made an effort. However, many placed Earth into a declining state by not acknowledging climate change when it was first recognized. This ignorance calls into question, should we explore geoengineering as a fix for solutions such as solar radiation and carbon capture and storage, Rather than attempting to get those who do not care involved, instead geoengineering them and “altering of the natural world by artificial means.” (Geo-Engineering, 0:32) Geoengineering is a very similar idea to that of a techno-fix. It suggests that instead of finding a natural or logical solution to a problem, we use technology or geoengineered tools that seem, for the most part, to be quick fixes.
Geoengineering as a solution to climate change could have a beneficial impact on a low-scale use in finding the solution or making progress with climate change. However, carbon capture and solar radiation management would be temporary fixes and lead to many alternative side effects that would inherently put us back where we started. It seems as it is revolutionary science; however, the science also tells us “any version of this technology carries risks of its own, including air pollution, damage to the ozone layer, and unanticipated climate changes.” (Keith). Climate change is far too expensive for it not to have many politicians wrapped up in it, “Already, politicians loathe to implement serious measures to cut emissions are privately attracted to the geoengineering techno-fix, including albedo modification, as a substitute.”(Hall) They loathe these cuts as it directly affects their bank accounts, making them less weather than if they had continued production. In summary, based on the outcomes of the study of carbon capture and solar radiation management, Personally, geoengineering is not the solution for the healthiest version of Earth. However, like techno-fixes, a few geoengineering solutions would positively impact us as a society.
“Geo-Engineering: Playing God? | Interview with Clive Hamilton”YouTube, uploaded by breakingtheset, 6 June 2013, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVKINPLa6nk&feature=emb_title
Keith, David, et al. “Let’s Talk About Geoengineering by David Keith.” Project Syndicate, 21 Mar. 2019, www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/solar-geoengineering-global-climate-debate-by-david-keith-2019-03.
Hall, Shannon, “Exxon Knew about Climate Change almost 40 years ago,” Scientific American, 26 October 2015.