According to researchers from the University of Southampton (UoS) and Massey University (MU) the public has “a negative view of climate engineering, the deliberate large-scale manipulation of the environment to counteract climate change.”
There is a clear indication, as the study suggests, that large-scale directed information could be reported to the public to counteract the current perspective of geoengineering so that support for these weather altering projects can continue in the open.
The public’s reaction to geoengineering as highly controversial can be quelled with policies from lawmakers that can foster positive reactions to this method of CO2 reduction.
If only the negative perception of these schemes could be mitigated or eliminated, state the authors of the study.
The study entitled , “A Quantitative Evaluation of the Public Response to Climate Engineering” asserts that “there is a pressing need to inform the public and understand their concerns before policy decisions are taken” and with “positive associations” concerning “carbon dioxide removal (CDR) over solar radiation management (SRM) techniques” can be changed with a concentrated effort to coerce the public.
Damon Teagle, co-author of the study said: “Because even the concept of climate engineering is highly controversial, there is pressing need to consult the public and understand their concerns before policy decisions are made.”
This finding is concerning to the authors of the study because “previous attempts to engage the public with climate engineering have been exploratory and small scale.”
The study outlines the need for “commercial methods used to evaluate brands and new product concepts to develop a comparative approach for evaluating the public reaction to a variety of climate engineering concepts.”
In New Zealand, scientists admit that citizens “don’t want mirrors in space, they don’t want particles pumped into the stratosphere, but they’re a bit less worried about things such as directly capturing carbon from the air.”
Malcome Wright, co-author of the study revealed that “there’s a lot of people arguing now that trying to control CO 2 emissions has failed. The argument is that big engineering approaches are needed to reduce the effects of climate change. Some of the ideas around are outrageously wacky, and a lot of them would be the engineering feats of our time if they were developed.”
Wright said: “Because we’ve never really done anything like climate engineering before, there are risks. It could have unknown effects to try to reverse what is happening with climate change and I think it’s highly likely that if we proceed with it, there will be different techniques used in different parts of the world. I think ideas around biochar and air capture are highly likely to be experimented with in parts of the world within five years.”
Late last year, hacking the weather of the planet is the focus of a white paper entitled, “Geoengineering Research and its Limitations” wherein the barriers of technology and social constructs are discussed.
Rob Wood, co-author of the study and associate professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington (UoW) explains: “In the past five years or so, geoengineering has moved from the realm of quackery to being the subject of scientific research. We wanted to contribute to a serious intellectual discourse.”
Wood suggests that “the idea of using salt particles to increase moisture content in the air.”
This method of cloud seeding, called marine cloud brightening (MCB) is alleged to reflect light from the oceans back out into space.
Another proposal includes a system called the StratoShield that would “spew several million metric tons of sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere, reducing the sun’s radiation globally by 1.8 percent.”
Paul Crutzen, author of a paper expounding on the StratoSheild, said: “Policy makers are worried that the use of these sulfur particles would only contribute to more air pollution. Building trust between scientists and the general public would be needed to make such a large-scale climate modiﬁcation acceptable, even if it would be judged to be advantageous.”
One geoengineering scheme involves shooting salt water into clouds to create “oceans” in our skies. These clouds, it is believed, could reflect sunlight back out, thereby cooling the planet.
Researchers at the UoW suggest the idea of marine cloud brightening. Using this brightening to manipulate the earth’s weather patterns, according to these scientists, is of no concern as far as its impact on our natural environment.
Geoengineering is being sold to the world as a “global public good”.
Stephen Gardiner , researcher for the UoW maintains that: “Just spraying sulfates into the stratosphere is not the kind of thing that necessarily benefits everyone, so in that sense it seems a mistake to call it a global public good.”
The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) commissioned a study with the national Academy of Sciences (NSA) to determine of geoengineering would allow humans to alter the weather of the planet and halt the forces of man-made climate change.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and NASA are involved in this project.
Edward Price, spokesperson for the CIA stated: “It’s natural that on a subject like climate change the Agency would work with scientists to better understand the phenomenon and its implications on national security.”
The study will analyze:
• Technical implications of geoengineering techniques
• Feasibility of geoengineering techniques
• Evaluate impact and national security concerns
• Methods to manage solar radiation management
• Methods to artificially cool the temperature of the planet
• Investigative proposals for removing CO2 from the atmosphere
Geoengineering experiments are happening without the consent of the public.
In 2009, the Senator Kay Hutchinson introduced S601, entitled “Weather Mitigation Reseach and Development Policy Authorization Act”.
The purpose of the bill was “to develop and implement a comprehensive and coordinated national weather mitigation policy and a national cooperative Federal and State program of weather mitigation research and development.”
The Congress House Science and Technology Committee (STC) discussed “potential environmental risks and benefits of various proposals, associated domestic and international governance issues, evaluation mechanisms and criteria, research and development (R&D) needs, and economic rationales supporting the deployment of geoengineering activities.”
The United Kingdom (UK), Germany, and India provided scientists that supported the engagement of geoengineering technologies in the name of reducing emissions, preserving “climate sensitivity”, and climate thresholds under the pursuit of political, social and economic mitigation strategies.
The National Research Council released published a document in 2003 entitled “Critical Issues in Weather Modification Research” wherein it was suggested that because the weather is “sometimes [a] fatal force in human affairs” it would be advantageous for governments to find an effective way of controlling it.
According to the Geoengineering: Governance and Technology Policy (GGTP) report , produced by the Congressional Research Service, the US government “has joined with other nations . . . as a participant in several international agreements on climate change.”
The experimental aspect of geoengineering in the US is directed in the “absence of a comprehensive [climate change] policy” that will “modify the Earth’s climate” and make these technologies available to “foreign governments and entities in the private sector to use unilaterally without authorization from the US government or an international treaty.’
Oversight concerning geoengineering research and experimental projects is allocated to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Energy (DoE), Department of Agriculture (DoA), and the DoD.