According to some scientists, pollution can help curb global warming, if there is global warming.
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Air pollution may be just the thing to fight global warming, some scientists say.
Prominent scientists, among them a Nobel laureate, said a layer of pollution deliberately spewed into the atmosphere could act as a “shade” from the sun’s rays and help cool the planet.
Reaction to the proposal here at the annual U.N. conference on climate change is a mix of caution, curiosity and some resignation to such “massive and drastic” operations, as the chief U.N. climatologist describes them.
The Nobel Prize-winning scientist who first made the proposal is himself “not enthusiastic about it.”
“It was meant to startle the policymakers,” said Paul J. Crutzen, of Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Chemistry. “If they don’t take action much more strongly than they have in the past, then in the end we have to do experiments like this.”
Serious people are taking Crutzen’s idea seriously. This weekend at Moffett Field, California, NASA’s Ames Research Center hosts a closed-door, high-level workshop on the global haze proposal and other “geoengineering” ideas for fending off climate change.
So what are the environmentalists to do now? Do they save the earth from global warming by encouraging pollution or do they save the earth from pollution and cause more global warming? My, how the worries of an environmentalist never end.