Introducing the WGC You Tube channel


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Who doesn’t have a YouTube channel these days?  Well, now we do too.  Why?

The driving goal behind our work is to broaden the conversation around what is certain to become an important decision in coming years – whether or not to embark on a large-scale technological response to climate change – and all the questions that come with that decision.

Most of the people involved in researching and advocating for research and deployment of geoengineering technologies are deeply concerned with the state of the planet.  These are people who understand that the science tells us the world is heading towards an unpredictable and dangerous future, and care about what that means for not just for the planet, but also for those most vulnerable to climate change impacts.

At the moment, this conversation is limited to a narrow set of voices, mostly scientists having a scientific conversation.

Understanding the science is certainly important!  But what has become increasingly clear is that the decision to research and potentially deploy geoengineering technologies is going to be almost entirely a political one.

It is for that reason that over the coming months the Washington Geoengineering Consortium will be releasing a series of videos featuring voices from a variety of perspectives on the conversation around geoengineering.

As we roll this out, we are asking folks who are already “in the weeds” on climate policy and geoengineering to contribute short videos with their thoughts on civil society engagement with geoengineering.

These voices will include those who feel that geoengineering is pure folly, a dangerous road we cannot even think about walking down because we are bound to screw it up, or because those already most at risk from climate change will bear the majority of the risk involved with a large scale technological intervention in the world’s climate systems.

These voices will also include those who feel that many geoengineering technologies promise a direct path forward, a way to deal with climate change cheaply, quickly, and without the political headache radical emissions reductions will require.

Importantly, we will also feature voices of those (and there are many) who are not at either of those poles, but who feel passionately that we can address preventable climate suffering, or that we can save the arctic and prevent dangerous sea level rise, or even those who feel that many geoengineering options are terrible but we may have no other choice.

Soon, we’ll be featuring voices from outside the realm of climate policy, because geoengineering is not just a climate issue.  We will be looking to leading voices in health and human rights, economic and legal justice, and anti-oppression movements.  Many geoengineering technologies have implications for these fields, and it will be important to inform our thinking by understanding how.

We should say right off the bat- what folks give us back in these videos is up to them, not all of them will stick the script.  But it is important to start airing arguments on all sides of the issues (because there are multiple issues, it is not just “do we do it, or do we not”).

We are putting these videos up because we feel hearing all these voices out is important.  The Washington Geoengineering Consortium does not take a stand or advocate for a position.  Rather we feel strongly that if the conversation about these decisions has any hope of being just, folks need to engage sooner than later, and it needs to be as robust and inclusive as possible.

In the long term, this will enable, or at least make more likely, an inclusive, just, and engaged converstation that allows for more voices to be heard.   We’d rather have arguments from all perspectives (well made or not) out there to be rebutted, making for a stronger conversation down the road.

Finally, you may disagree with a video, you may feel that things have been left out of a statement or argument.  You may feel someone is totally wrong (even on the internet!)  We hope, in some ways, that you will, and that you will tell us why in a comment.

What we hope you will not do is feel that you don’t know enough to have an opinion, or that this is a conversation for experts.  In decisions of the magnitude geoengineering technologies will present, all voices count, all voices matter.  Please speak up!