The geoengineering debate

As the years go by and global warming shows no signs of slowing down, the scientific community is growing anxious about the future of our planet and of humanity. Despite the community’s previous warnings, most countries have not yet been able to reduce their carbon emission and to change anything about climate change. Now that this goal seems unreachable, scientists are trying to find other ways of saving our planet. The “plan B” they have put together would, with enough research, use geoengineering. Solar radiation management and carbon capture and storage have become increasingly interesting because they are ways to fix problems we were not able to avoid. Unfortunately, these are more like techno-fixes than actual long-term solutions. Spraying sulfate particles in the atmosphere to shield the Earth for the heat of the sun and capturing carbon to store it somewhere else are only ways to deal with the consequences caused by a problematic behavior. Geoengineering would not actually address the heart of the issue. It would be like putting a Band-Aid on a cut that needs stitches. Not only would it not actually help with what actually caused us to need those fixes, it could be misused and actually cause harm to our planet. Instead of reducing their carbon emissions, companies, and even countries, could use geoengineering as a way to avoid making changes. They could use it to counteract their actions without ever making changes, which would not actually help our situation. In order for geoengineering to really work, it would have to be used while true efforts are put towards reducing carbon emission. It seems to me that there has always been a fight between science and the government or any kind of authority figure in society, no matter what the subject is. When the science community started growing and more and more discoveries were being made, the government wanted to limit this growth in knowledge and independence, and preserve the authority of religion. Back then, only our imagined orders were affected by those debates. Today, the issue the government and scientists are debating about goes way beyond our humanity. Our generation carries the weight of the future of the planet and every living creature on it. For the first time in history, it is our responsibility to think beyond ourselves as humans and take actions to prevent the unforgivable.

2 thoughts on “The geoengineering debate

  1. I like the analogy you used to compare geoengineering to a band-aid on a wound that needs stitches it’s easy to see geoengineering as a cure-all but without systemic change, our current course may not change. I like the connection you made between religion and power and how that effects science I’m curious what part modern religious institutions have to do with the spread of climate change information.


  2. I also believe that we are a “reactionary” species–it is much more likely that we respond to a problem after it has presented itself (in this case, environmental changes). This is opposed to a more proactive approach, which would look like us finding ways to cool the average world temperature prior to its increase.


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