Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Revisit Geoengineering In Light Of The Solar Shield Risk Report

In light of the recent report released, the much heralded Solar Shield may not be such a good idea after all.

The report is on scientific simulation by Ken Caldeira (et al) of Stanford University.

According to the study released 4 Jun 2007, the Fresnel lens shield contemplated by NASA and others to block some sunlight and cool the planet this way carries TOO Large Risks of causing the opposite. Because if the project was firmly in place, but for some reason failed afterwards, an abrupt runaway heating would result, far worse than we would have otherwise. Also the rainfall would increase dramatically on a Planetary scale.

This last may be attributable to the large water vapor reserve now building up in the currently cooling stratosphere. Cool it some more, and you mess it up big time. Abruptly heat it then (as a result of shield failure) and you have a burst shower on your hand, but more like on a huge planetary scale.

Temper or not to temper?

First, the climate is a sum of organic movements, much like the stock market. And like with the stock market - abrupt, sudden and drastic change can send undesired shock waves and trigger unexpected results.

Second, in the context of something as awesomely vast as the planet we may need to talk about augmentation rather then engineering and even that pretty quietly and humbly. GEntly underpinning deep ecology is how I prefer to think about it if in any way...Augmentation would actually mean working with the Planet's natural and organic processes, not against it or to it.

Certainly a solar shield blocking a sun would be such an Unnatural measure and on an EXTREME scale. Any such measure should be gravely avoided. And ONLY Used as last resort, not as a preemptive tool.

It just may be that no one wants an insurance policy that increases risks. And the shield used preemptively could be such an ill-considered insurance, according to the report.

Via http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-06/ci-gaq060107.php

My other Global Engineering Post:
Change climate with sentient bots?

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