The discussions on Geoengineering Watch illustrate how this new anti-geoengineering platform, grounded on the premise of existing and ongoing climate manipulation, relates to broader hostilities towards experts and concerns about class inequality. We can expect these underlying tensions around inequality to grow under the current administration, thus potentially attracting new people to an anti-geoengineering movement. It’s possible that forming an opinion on geoengineering becomes not an impersonal assessment of a technology, but an identity position.
Commentary: Can a Philosopher and a Scientist Co-teach a Class on Climate Engineering? – Thomas Ackerman & Stephen Gardiner
The answer to this question is ‘yes’ because we did it, so perhaps it is more appropriate to ask whether such a class can be taught successfully. Climate engineering provides an interesting, and perhaps disturbing, case study of the nexus of science (can we do it), ethics (should we do it), and governance (how would we do it). The idea of co-teaching a class on ethics and science focused on climate engineering originated with Steve Gardiner in mid-2013, leading to a class that we co-taught at the University of Washington during Winter Quarter 2015. Our intent here is to summarize our experience and provide some lessons learned.
I shuddered when I put David Keith’s book, A Case for Climate Engineering, on the syllabus. As far as I…