A group of scientists from universities in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia have released a new study calling for geoengineering of the climate in order to save the coral reefs from a process known as “bleaching.”
The researchers, including authors from the Carnegie Institution for Science, the University of Exeter, the Met Office Hadley Centre and the University of Queensland, call for geoengineering the climate using a practice known as Solar Radiation Management (SRM). This involves spraying aerosols from planes in an attempt to reflect the sun’s light with the purpose of preventing rising sea surface temperatures.
“Our work highlights the sort of climate scenarios that now need to be considered if the protection of coral reefs is a priority,” lead author Dr. Lester Kwiatkowski of the Carnegie Institution for Science told Exeter University.
The scientists say this step may prevent sea temperatures from rising one to two degrees in temperature. If the temperatures do rise, the coral reefs will start turning white, or bleaching. The rise in temperature disrupts the symbiotic relationship between the coral and algae, causing the coral to lose its color and disabling its ability to eat the algae. Bleaching alone will not kill the coral, but if it continues to reject the algae and temperatures remain high, the coral will die.
Mass bleaching is predicted over the coming decades and the scientists say geoengineering the climate might be the only way to limit the damage. The study examined the differences between a hypothetical SRM geoengineering scheme and the most aggressive CO2 reduction plan discussed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The international team found that the coral reefs had a better chance of survival with geoengineering.
The research was published in the journal, Nature Climate Change.
The controversy around geoengineering grows as more people ask whether weather modification programs are already active. This is what is derogatorily called the “Chemtrails Conspiracy.” It is highly imperative that you research the dangers of geoengineering and consider the possibility that the U.S. (and other nations) may already be participating in live geoengineering schemes without informing the public or the global community. Whether to combat climate change, or use as a weapon, altering the weather will have disastrous ramifications.
Believe it or not, the United States government has a history of weather modification. In a 1996 document entitled “Weather as a Force Multiplier: Owning the Weather by 2025,” the U.S. Air Force discussed a number of proposals for using weather as a weapon. The Environmental Modification Treaty was signed by the United States and other nations to halt global weather modification.
But the government did not simply research these ideas. It actually implemented them. During the Vietnam War, the U.S. government operated covert weather modification programs under Operation Popeye. The government does not only experiment with technology in foreign countries—it likes to try it at home, as well. In 2012 it was revealed that the U.S. Army sprayed toxic chemicals over the skies of St. Louis without informing the public.
Geoengineering and, specifically, Solar Radiation Management have increasingly been in the news as the global community looks for solutions to a host of environmental issues, including climate change. Earlier this year, an international committee of scientists released a report stating that using geoengineering techniques to combat the effects of climate change is not a viable alternative to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The committee report called for further research and understanding of various geoengineering techniques—including carbon dioxide removal schemes, and SRM—before implementation. The scientists found that SRM techniques are likely to present “serious known and possible unknown environmental, social, and political risks, including the possibility of being deployed unilaterally.”
While speaking at an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in San Jose, California, Professor Alan Robock offered a warning on geoengineering. Robock discussed the possibility that the Central Intelligence Agency is using the weather as a weapon of war. Robock has done research for the intergovernmental panel on climate change (IPCC) in the past.
Robock stated he was phoned by two men claiming to be from the CIA, asking whether or not it was possible for hostile governments to use geoengineering, or mass manipulation of the weather, against the United States.
Robock noted that, “The CIA was a major funder of the National Academies report so that makes me really worried who is going to be in control.” The National Academy of Sciences report examined the effects and possibility of geoengineering to combat climate change. The report was also funded by NASA, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
What do you think? Is the government spraying the skies in a misguided attempt to save the world? Is it more sinister? Or is the whole thing a distraction? Leave your thoughts below.
Want to know more? Check out “Renowned Climate Scientist Fears the CIA Could Use the Weather as a War Weapon” for a Background on GeoEngineering!