Friday, September 9, 2011

Geoengineering research can be considered analogous to pharmaceutical research. One would not take a medicine that had not been rigorously tested to make sure that it worked and was safe. But, if there was a risk of disease, one would research possible treatments and, once the effects were established, one would take the medicine if needed and appropriate. Similarly we need controlled testing of any technologies that might be used in the future. Hopefully we will never need geoengineering but, if we do, to fail to assess its usefulness and safety in advance would be a risk no one, least of all those most concerned with the environment, would thank us for.

.?The proposal for a giant tether designed to combat global warming seems right on the boundary between "very cutting-edge" and "crackpot" science. I hope the designers have factored in a legal team to deal with any peculiar weather - anywhere - occurring as a result of this experiment. It seems virtually guaranteed that someone, and perhaps many, will file lawsuits if the slightest aberration in weather occurs. Before spending millions of pounds developing such a system, the investigators, and the funding agencies, should take a very hard look as to whether they can cope with such issues. I doubt that they can.


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