It has been no secret that I am a global warming skeptic. I am not saying that global warming is not happening. I just have serious doubts that it is man and not a cycle caused by natural forces. My cause for concern grows when I see articles like this one in the New York Times that starts to discuss various methods of geoengineering that can be used to combat global warming.
In the past few decades, a handful of scientists have come up with big, futuristic ways to fight global warming: Build sunshades in orbit to cool the planet. Tinker with clouds to make them reflect more sunlight back into space. Trick oceans into soaking up more heat-trapping greenhouse gases.
Their proposals were relegated to the fringes of climate science. Few journals would publish them. Few government agencies would pay for feasibility studies. Environmentalists and mainstream scientists said the focus should be on reducing greenhouse gases and preventing global warming in the first place.
But now, in a major reversal, some of the world’s most prominent scientists say the proposals deserve a serious look because of growing concerns about global warming.
Worried about a potential planetary crisis, these leaders are calling on governments and scientific groups to study exotic ways to reduce global warming, seeing them as possible fallback positions if the planet eventually needs a dose of emergency cooling.
Later in the article, they go into some theoretical discussions of how this can be done such as lacing the stratosphere with sulfur dioxide (the byproduct is acid rain), putting white plastic islands in the ocean and fertilizing the sea with iron to stimulate sea plant growth. We could cause massive damage to this planet all in the name of a phenomenon that could be happening as a large scale cycle. Stopping this cycle could bring more disasterous consequences than letting it happening.
The problem that I see is that we have only been keeping accurate environmental records for the past hundred years and it has only been about thirty years since we have been able to keep track of weather on a global basis through weather satellites. Despite what the more vocal environmental groups say, extreme warming trends have occurred in the past as well as extreme cooling trends.
I believe that agenda-driven theories have pushed the global warming argument so far that a lot of data is being ignored because the data doesn’t fit into the concept. There has to be a lot more research into all of the environmental causes for global warming before we start dumping large amounts of chemicals into our atmosphere. After all, we don’t want the cure to kill the patient.