The purpose of the hot air balloon adding two whole kilograms of chalk to the atmosphere is a glorious multipurpose marketing exercise. It might as well be a skywriting advert.
Building a sunshade for the whole planet radiates cinematic desperation — it’s advertising the terror of climate change — Really, we need to do that? It’ll get everyone talking about climate change for another five minutes, as if it mattered. But make no mistake, it’s such an ambitious Manhattan-scale idea, it’s advertising Bill Gates the billionaire, too. This is meant to raise his global cachet too. Super-Bill to the rescue. Is he God?
But it’s also advertising other things, like how stupid the climate models are, how fake the pious planetary-care is, and how daft the whole UN-herd is.
Bill Gates plans to launch a bag of chalk into the stratosphere and somehow get useful data out of it about whether we could build an Earthly sunshade to cool ourselves on the same scale as a super volcano. ( To that end, if it looked like he might succeed, watch the Paris agreement dissolve a nanosecond after someone starts to get serious about shading one nation and not some other one.)
So straight off some of the Ecoworriers panic that this is a terrifying experiment — not because Bill Gates is recklessly endangering the climate — but because, if this works, it ” will be used by politicians as a justification to postpone reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”
Lordy! Imagine the disaster if the planet cooled, and the Green movement got what it wanted without the hair shirts? What really matters to them, reducing CO2 or getting people to stop driving and clogging up their roads?
Indeed, not having to bankrupt all the fossil fuel corporations? I mean really!?
It’s worse than that– the Deplorables would get hooked on pumping up the white skies, addicted to chalk to cover up for all their sins!
‘It would cool the planet by reflecting solar radiation but once you’re on to that, it’s like taking heroin — you’ve got to carry on doing the drug to keep on having the effect,’ he said.
He explained that without tackling pollution first we would have to keep lifting more and more dust into the stratosphere, which would change the daytime sky to white and if it ever stopped there would be a rise in global temperatures again.
Recklessly fiddling with the climate to save us from reckless fiddling.
Apparently the same models that have all the answers now, are pretty useless at predicting what happens when one aerosol changes.
Climatologists are also concerned that such tinkering could unintentionally disrupt the circulation of ocean currents that regulate our weather.
This itself could unleash a global outbreak of extreme climatic events that might devastate farmland, wipe out entire species and foster disease epidemics.
Which begs the question — some models are happy to say exactly what will happen if we reduce CO2, but those same models apparently don’t work at all on aerosols.
Scientists may be able to set the perfect climatic conditions for farmers in America’s vast Midwest, but at the same time this setting might wreak drought havoc across Africa.
For it is not possible to change the temperature in one part of the world and not disturb the rest. Everything in the world’s climate is interconnected.
Furthermore, any change in global average temperature would in turn change the way in which heat is distributed around the globe, with some places warming more than others.
This, in turn, would affect rain levels. Heat drives the water cycle — in which water evaporates, forms clouds and drops as rain. Any heat alteration would cause an accompanying shift in rainfall patterns. But how and where exactly?
There is no way of predicting how the world’s long-term weather may respond to having a gigantic chemical sunshade plonked on top of it.
No way of predicting long term weather indeed. Someone tell the modelers.
Imagine if the world was going to cool in the next 50 years but all the models said it was warming so geniuses put up a sunscreen and made the cooling worse?
What if a Krakatoa goes off the week after the dust is released?
Someone will have to design a nuclear-powered flying vacuum-cleaner before the next ice age hits.
h/t Colin, and Kathleen.