Idea, once ridiculed, could become reality

A controversial idea to brake global warming, first floated by the father of the hydrogen bomb, is affordable and technically feasible, but its environmental impact remains unknown, a trio of US scientists say.

Sowing the stratosphere with particles to reflect the Sun and cool the planet is possible with current technology and would cost a fraction of the bill from climate change or reducing emissions by fossil fuels, they argue.

Back in 1997, as man-made global warming became a political issue, US nuclear physicist Edward Teller and others suggested spreading sulphate particles into the upper atmosphere.

Carried around the globe on high-speed winds, the whitish particulates, known as aerosols, would reflect the Sun, reducing solar radiation by around one percent.

It would provide a cooling similar to when volcanoes spew out clouds of dust, said Teller, who argued this option was far smarter than switching out of cheap and dependable fossil fuels.

Teller, a hawk on nuclear weapons who reputedly inspired the movie character Dr. Strangelove, was lashed for an idea that critics said was unworkable and laden with risk.

The new study, published in the British journal Environmental Research Letters, makes a cost analysis of so-called solar radiation management, or SRM, by aerosols.

SAPA

About these ads

One response to “Idea, once ridiculed, could become reality

  1. Yeah. Back in 1997, Dr. Teller was assuming that the specialists in climatology – the “consensus” – were honest professionals in whom real scientists could vest some confidence.

    Note that every damned time somebody proposed any sort of mitigatory strategy to physically reduce the alleged “catastrophic man-made global warming” (ranging from using the so-called Geritol solution to increase oceanic phytoplankton uptake of atmospheric CO2 through the interposition of broad but featherweight orbital Mylar mirrors to reduce terrestrial insolation), the Watermelon warmistas howled against it.

    Nothing but the cessation of all CO2 emissions would “solve” the problem about which the alarmists were squealing. How dare you fiends talk about geoengineering! Only the complete obliteration of industrial civilization will serve our sacred purpose!

    In the November 2009 edition of Analog magazine (written months before Climategate happened), physicist Jeffery D. Kooistra published “Lessons From the Lab” on the subject of Anthony Watts’ preliminary report on the Surface Stations project. He concluded:

    “I have long wondered why most of my fellow physicists haven’t been as skeptical of global warming alarmism as I have been. I think one reason, perhaps even more important than their politics affecting their judgment, is that they naturally assume other scientists are as careful in how they obtain data as physicists are. I’ve been a global warming skeptic for some time now, and it didn’t even occur to me that most of the time the thermometers would be ‘sited next to a lamp.’ What’s really ironic is that, if someone claims to see a flying saucer, which hurts no one and costs nothing, debunkers come out in force. But let a former vice-president claim environmental apocalypse is upon us, and suddenly we’re appropriating billions and changing our lifestyles.

    “Cripes.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s