The advantages and disadvantages of solar geoengineering ought to be compared to each other using a cost-benefit analysis. While there has been much discussion about the trade-offs inherent in solar geoengineering, there has been surprisingly little quantitative, formal modeling of these trade-offs.
Is staying below a 2C rise in temperature is a realistic or fantastic target? There’s been talk about this lately, in Nature and on this forum. Beneath this question lies another question: Is there hope?
The ‘Lomborg gambit’ and why the allure of solar geoengineering must be resisted by the Paris negotiators – Prof John Shepherd CBE FRS and Andy Parker
Nothing we know about solar geoengineering should distract you from the task of agreeing deep and binding cuts in CO2 emissions, and effective support for adaptation to climate change. Ignore the siren calls of anyone who attempts another ‘Lomborg gambit’ by dangling solar geoengineering as an alternative to emissions cuts, and get on and agree the climate deal that we – and the planet – so desperately need.
The book’s strength is that it largely achieves these two potentially contradictory tasks. Morton delivers a utopian scenario for climate engineering while still giving enough attention to its possible pitfalls and missteps to reveal just how difficult such a path would be to craft in reality. Time and again he emphasizes the need for care, compassion and justice in in both the purposes and design of a climate geoengineering intervention.
My comment is meant to express a concern about how “climate engineering” is typically presented, initially at least, as set apart from other kinds of responses to climate change and even as raising “new” or “distinctive” ethical problems. I realise that this situation is changing somewhat, so to try to help it on its way, here is why I personally endorse a move away from talking about “climate engineering” in favour of talking about the many separate technologies that are currently herded together under that label. I realise this makes things rather messy, but I also think that messiness is a perennial feature of climate change politics.
Climate-induced migration and climate engineering: Three notes on how to think through them together – Holly J. Buck
All scholarship on the relationship between climate migration and unrest (including Kelley et al’s paper) makes clear that there is always a complex of factors, which begs the question: can international law make decisions on conferring migrant or refugee status if someone is, say, a 30% climate migrant, a 20% economic migrant, and a 50% war refugee? The crux of the challenge is obvious. Governing climate engineering, with its uncertainty and difficulty in attributing consequences, is a similarly complex institutional design challenge.
The Climate Engineering Conference 2014 (CEC14) was the largest geoengineering meeting to date, bringing over 350 people together in Berlin in August 2014. The most prominent controversy at CEC14 was the introduction of a document – the “Berlin Declaration” –that those attending could choose to support. The document, drafted by representatives of the Oxford Geoengineering Programme, suggested some steps forward for governing solar geoengineering research. The story of the response to this document and its eventual withdrawal should hold interest for anyone concerned with the governance of emerging technologies or openness in science policy
How are we to govern Solar Radiation Management (SRM) technologies? This is far from a straightforward question. SRM4G is 3-workshop project being conducted over the course of 2015 which seeks develop a process for structuring future-oriented deliberations on SRM governance.
A lot of press coverage of the reports and the event marking their release. We did a nice thing and rounded up the major pieces.
The December 12 issue of Newsweek magazine includes the cover story “Planet Reboot: Fighting Climate Change With Geoengineering” The…