A Case for Climate Engineering
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: The MIT Press
Series: Boston Review Books
Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
1 Engineering the World’s Sunshine
How might geoengineering work? Suppose the goal was to cut the rate of global warming in half starting in 2020 by putting sulfuric acid into the stratosphere. If combined with serious efforts to cut emissions, this is—in my opinion—a plausible scenario...
2 Climate Risk
James Hansen, the world’s most visible climate-scientist turned activist, has said that we must stop development of the Canadian tar sands, a growing source of energy-intensive oil production, or else, “It’s game over for the planet.”8 I share...
Science cannot resolve political or ethical questions about solar geoengineering, but neither can you develop sound judgment without a firm grasp on a few central facts. Sound judgment requires facts and ethics. Don’t trust my ethical judgment on...
4 Technology and Design
Arguments for research on geoengineering often appeal to the ethic of scientific freedom. Discussion about its risks and efficacy are similarly couched in language that assumes that research will uncover the risks and efficacy as if they were facts of...
5 Ethics and Politics
I was expecting fireworks in the wood-paneled confines of a Cambridge University hall as I helped introduce Jim Lovelock and Lowell Wood during the opening reception for a geoengineering meeting in 2004. In the late 1960s Lovelock proposed the Gaia ...
The seat pods in business class face inwards, away from the windows. Looking up from my work, I twist in my seat struggling to open the blind. Light floods in, washing out my neighbor’s movie. Like spilling the “free” wine, it is a social blunder to let sunlight ...