Moral Philosophy and The Engineer

The reasons for the interest are obvious.  Geoengineering offers a partial solution to climate change that could buy time to make the necessary changes to curb carbon emissions. This could ease economic pain and some companies could profit from it.  

The issues that I brought up in my blog post for week 3 regarding the term techno-fix were never resolved.  If a techno-fix is an engineering solution to a social problem, what is an engineering problem?  Don’t all problems boil down to social problems eventually?  I suspect that techno-fix actually refers to an engineering solution to a problem that has a perceived moral component.  Techno-fixes are no more and no less than engineering solutions used to preempt an effort to change people. In this new context, geoengineering is definitely a techno-fix. It presents a partial solution, in the short term, to allow technology and economies to catch up to a world without fossil fuels.  

As David Keith points out with Mencken’s elegant statement, there is almost certainly not a simple solution to climate change.  I suspect that geoengineering can be an effective part of that solution.  Naturally, geoengineering should be used carefully.  Carbon capture is a good place to start because it has low likelihood of causing massive unexpected side effects.  I’m more skeptical of aerosol solar blocking but open to the idea.  

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