U.S. geoengineering research gets a lift with $4 million from Congress

What could possibly go wrong?

From the AAAS

By John Fialka, E&E NewsJan. 23, 2020 , 10:00 AM

Originally published by E&E News

BOULDER, COLORADO—The top climate change scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said he has received $4 million from Congress and permission from his agency to study two emergency—and controversial—methods to cool the Earth if the U.S. and other nations fail to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.

David Fahey, director of the Chemical Sciences Division of NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory, told his staff yesterday that the federal government is ready to examine the science behind “geoengineering”—or what he dubbed a “Plan B” for climate change.

Fahey said he has received backing to explore two approaches.

One is to inject sulfur dioxide or a similar aerosol into the stratosphere to help shade the Earth from more intense sunlight. It is patterned after a natural solution: volcanic eruptions, which have been found to cool the Earth by emitting huge clouds of sulfur dioxide.

The second approach would use an aerosol of sea salt particles to improve the ability of low-lying clouds over the ocean to act as shade.

This technique is borrowed from “ship tracks”—or long clouds left by the passage of ocean freighters that are seen by satellites as reflective pathways. They could be widened by injections of vapor from seawater by specialized ships to create shading effects.

Research in both techniques, Fahey emphasized, are recommended in a forthcoming study by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine titled “Climate Intervention Strategies that Reflect Sunlight to Cool Earth.”

But in a sign of how controversial the topic is, Fahey recommended changing the nomenclature from geoengineering to “climate intervention,” which he described as a “more neutral word.”

Fahey also emphasized this is not an approval to move forward with geoengineering. Rather, it’s to prepare the U.S. government for a political decision if the world fails to adequately limit the rise of global warming.

“Geoengineering is this tangled ball of issues and science is only one of them,” he said.

“One of the things I’m interested in doing is let’s separate the science out,” he added. The idea is to give policymakers a clear view of how a hurry-up bid to save the planet would work.

Even then, the results likely wouldn’t be immediate. Fahey showed slides and graphics that noted that a Plan B might take until the next century to complete the cooling.

Still, better science might “buy time” to improve the efforts, he said.

There would be drawbacks, he noted, after being asked by a researcher whether injections of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere might reduce seafood by acidifying the oceans.

“When you put aerosols up into the atmosphere, it does a lot of things,” Fahey, a physicist, responded. “That opens up this whole menu of things that you’d have to worry about.”

He said other aerosols such as calcite or titania “might have less impact, but nobody knows. We want to look at them in the laboratory.”

Several smaller nations have complained that the use of aircraft to inject aerosols into the atmosphere might alter the weather or destroy the ozone layer, which protects humans from some of the more harmful radiation from sunlight.

Fahey suggested that a scientific approach would require solving a list of unknowns, including tests to find out what’s in the stratosphere today and how to get aerosols to spread there homogeneously. Another likely area of research: unintended consequences.

“We have to use atmospheric observations to find out what we’re doing,” he added.

At the moment, the government has no planned experiments and NOAA’s authority does not extend into the stratosphere. But there is a bill in Congress called the “Climate Intervention Research Act” that would broaden its jurisdiction.

“There could be more than $100 million attached to this, I’m told,” he explained.

Full story here

HT/Peter B

137 thoughts on “U.S. geoengineering research gets a lift with $4 million from Congress

  1. I was wondering why this was given the green light, even though its dangerous? And could cause more problems then the climate scam…

    $100 million, I sense a lot of “s#&te” will be written in these reports to get every penny of the tax payers $100 million dollars😐

    But there is a bill in Congress called the “Climate Intervention Research Act” that would broaden its jurisdiction.

    “There could be more than $100 million attached to this, I’m told,” he explained

    • The research is in the planning stages, and realize that on the experimental scale any effects would be orders of magnitude smaller than that from a small volcano.

      • It’s not so much what we don’t know but what we don’t know we don’t know.
        We can’t look for potential negatives if we don’t realize they could be negatives in the first place.

    • “It is patterned after a natural solution: volcanic eruptions, which have been found to cool the Earth by emitting huge clouds of sulfur dioxide.”

      It’s really patterned after the effect of big chimney, worldwide sulphide ore smelting (all basemetals and with some iron ores) that was cleaned up over the period from late 1970s through the 1980s. Added, the pre-auto catylist smog which we cleaned up during the same time period.

      We’ve already done that research! Remember evil humans ‘killed’ a b’gillion lakes with acid rain, never to recover. Oh the the big smoke did coincide with the 40s-70s “Ice Age Cometh” and when the job was done, temperatures moved back up in the 80s and 90s almost to the 1930s _40s warmth (before the homogenes got hold of temp records and added on to it). Very telling that NOAA didn’t mention this.

    • I was wondering why this was given the green light, even though its dangerous? And could cause more problems then the climate scam…
      AGW gets worse….. /sarc

    • It wasn’t given the “green light”. It looks like this is money to research the feasibility of such endeavours. Hopefully saner minds will win out and this will be binned.

      • Don’t count on that happening.
        A change to a more climate hysterical administration would pave the way for the full enchilada.
        The camel has his nose in the tent…

    • Dan Sudlik:

      Nothing scary about it.

      We have been geoengineering the Earth ever since the start of the industrial Revolution, when we began burning fossil fuels and introducing Anthropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions into the atmosphere.

      They peaked at ~ i36 Megatons in 1979, and the Earth cooled down so much that there were fears of a return to the Little Ice Age,

      Then in the mid-1970’s, we began Clean Air efforts to reduce SO2 aerosol emissions, and temperatures predictably began to warm up, causing the anomalous warming that has occurred since then.

      Replacing some of that which we have removed will solve our warming problem

      • Burl Henry January 29, 2020 at 6:44 am
        …Replacing some of that which we have removed will solve our warming problem

        Warmer weather is NOT a problem.

      • The claim that all of the cooling of the 70’s was from SO2 is as crazy as the claim that all of the warming since 1850 is due to CO2.

      • Burl,

        Warming problem?? REALLY???

        Last summer, it took my peach trees a full MONTH longer to ripen than the year before–all because of the cold summer weather!

        Most days were 5 to 7 degrees cooler then predicted they’d be by the weather service!

        Many wheat fields in my area never ripened and were not harvested!

        So I have no idea what “warming problem” you’re referring to–except the false, politicized propaganda you’re falling for!

        Time for a reality check! Otherwise, we might find ourselves in a human-induced global famine because we’re too stupid to understand or recognize the evil forces arrayed against us!

        • RockyRoad January 29, 2020 at 7:28 am
          …Last summer, it took my peach trees a full MONTH longer to ripen than the year before–all because of the cold summer weather!

          Summer maximums in the eastern half of the USA-48 have, for many of those states, been dropping since the 19th century, others for the last 80 years.

          https://i.postimg.cc/xjHZQLfG/10er3ps.gif

          • …and I live in the middle of the western half of the USA, so the temperature decline appears to be pervasive.

            If this trend continues, I may not get fruit this coming summer! Time to plant carrots and potatoes, instead!

        • The ice-age farmer has a Grand Solar Minimum Growing Degree Tool —-plug in your Zip-Code and see how bad 2019 was:
          http://iceagefarmer.com/ggd/
          Growing Degree Days are a measure of heat accumulation used by professionals provide best case outlook as to plant’s pace to maturity.

          • My GDD dropped 17.2% last year! No wonder my peaches too an extra month to ripen compared to the year before!

      • A more pragmatic approach would be to find a way to introduce more CO2 into the atmosphere. The commensurate increase in global food production, and the buffer delaying and mitigating the coming cooling cycle are just two benefits.

        • Yes, indeed!

          Experts say from 15 to 25% of global foidstuff production come from the increase we’ve seen in atmospheric CO2 over the last 50 years!

          That is one of the primary reasons the world hasn’t experienced massive famine!

      • Burl Henry:
        We did not introduce “Antropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions to the atmosphere”. Gaseous SO2 was emitted into the atmosphere and is now emitted when certain grades of coal and oil are burned. Most of the SO2 in the troposphere is absorbed by water vapor and falls in the form of acid rain, so that its impact on the climate is negligible. Formation of SO2 aerosols is possible at low temperatures only (boiling point is -10oC), usually during volcanic eruptions with the release of gases at high altitudes. The decisive role in lowering the temperature is played by emissions of solid particles (soot, ash, volcanic ash, etc.), which block solar radiation.

        • Aleks:

          You are mistaken:

          The conversion of SO2, in the presence of moisture, to H2SO4 (the SO2 aerosol) is very rapid.

          According to NASA, both stratospheric and tropospheric SO2 aerosols “reflect sunlight, reducing the amount of energy reaching the Earth’s surface, cooling, it”

          Its effect is NOT negligible! ALL El Ninos are caused by reductions in the amount of SO2 aerosols in the atmosphere.

          With respect to the effects of the solid particles which you mention THEIR effects are negligible, since they quickly settle out of the atmosphere, while SO2 aerosols circulate around the globe.

      • There is no conclusive evidence that anthropogenic SO2 emissions had any influence on world wide temperatures. It does seem to have lowered the pH of local precipitation that may have caused health issues for forrests.

      • Burl: The “geoengineering was pretty puny in 1750. From Wiki:

        “In 1750, the population of the world was 629 million people. By the year 1950, the population had increased to 2.52 billion.”

        The above figures are the reason more scientifically sensible people officially marked 1950 as the beginning of significant warming (most of this latter population fig. was growth in unindustrialized countries). Did you know the goal posts were pushed back to 1850 only in the 2015 IPCC report? And this was to bankroll the 0.6C of warming to the “noble cause” in the face of projections of warming that had proved 300% too high in the new millennium.

        • Gary Pearse:

          I agree that the geoengineering was pretty puny in 1750. Very little SO2 in the atmosphere at that time–annual emissions were less than 1 Megaton per year, did not reach 2 Megatons until 1850, 9 Megatons by 1880–and peaked at ~ 136 Megatons 1979, accompanied by cooling.

          Now we have reduced them to ~80 Megatons, accompanied by warming.
          16.

      • As for SO2, the problem to be reduced with the clean air act, was the increasing amount of acid rain which was supposed to have been affecting the forests.

        Was it not the particulate matter from the volcanoes that caused a reflective effect? The SO2 gas would absorb some radiation from the Sun and reradiate it in all directions? Most likely, being a very small level compared to CO2 which is a small fraction of that for H2O, it would have little effect on temperature. If you want to decrease the Green House effect, do some very stupid process like reducing water vapor.

      • As I have boringly repeated on numerous occassions, we want to fix an alledged problem by putting stuff into the atmoshpere to stop things happening that have apparently been caused by Humans putting stuff up into the atmosphere; Makes sens to this old engineer,……..NOT! When will the crazy stop, if not, can someone tell me what they’re smoking/snorting so I can get some? AtB

        PS: Anyone got any idea what the next suoer-scare story is going to be, when all others have never come to fruition, you guy & gals know, the nuclear Holocaust, the Chemo/Biological warfare, the Global cooling of the 60s-70s, now the Globul Warming of the 80s to date??? No evidence that any of them happened so far! Cold murky & misereable down here in Cream-Tea country this morning, still waiting for these endless hot sunny days to kill me!

    • Russ George, et al, (Planktos, Inc.) already tried a bit of geoengineering. Iron Sulphate was spread over areas of ocean, in hopes of sequestering CO2 by causing large phytoplankton blooms.

      His efforts were deemed a failure by the MSM and others, because when the blooms ahppened, they were quickly gobbled up by higher orders of the food chain.

      In fact, some saw his efforts as immensely successful (despite their claims to the contrary,) and quickly moved to ban all such efforts via moratoriums, etc. Despite the ban, George tried his experiment again, around Northern pacific waters around British Columbia, with resulting record salmon harvests, for the area.

      • PNW salmon “runs” refer to the number of salmon returning from the Pacific Ocean to spawning rivers. Note that for every 1,000 salmon smolts that enter the ocean, only 3 return to the river. Therefore slight changes in ocean conditions can greatly affect return numbers.

        That being stipulated, there is NO evidence that iron sulfate dumping off BC had any effect. None, zero, nada.

        Instead there is overwhelming evidence that the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) has enormous effects on salmon runs. We are in the cool Eastern Pacific phase of the PDO, have been since 2011, and runs have responded to that. See

        https://www.nwfsc.noaa.gov/research/divisions/fe/estuarine/oeip/ca-pdo.cfm

        A quote from that site:

        Since 2013, we’ve observed the highest adult returns of fall Chinook salmon since 1965, which is likely attributed to the strongly negative PDO phase beginning in 2011.

        • Your link given, clearly shows a correlation between salmon returns and the PDO.

          Data developed after a number of ocean Fe fertilization tests, have shown an increase in phytoplankton blooms, over widespread areas. Just the previously mentioned effort West of BC, resulted in a bloom of an area > 25,000 Km2.
          It might be simplistic to think that increasing the base structure of the entire food chain, has no effect on predator species, higher up the ladder, regardless of correlations with other phenomena.

          As with any other of humanity’s efforts, there will likely be unintended consequences, so caution while acting on a grand scale should be advised.
          No such caution has been shown by any promoters of the idea of catastrophic man made climate change, with their calls for at best, increasing reliance on “renewable” energy and at worst, returns to medieval conditions and drastic reductions in human populations.

          Such advocates would have no qualms whatsoever, undermining any efforts to ameliorate climate conditions, if those efforts actually worked and undercut attempts to gain wealth and power by those who continuously and stridently point at planetary apparitions, while reaching into everyone else’s pocket.

  2. It appears the lunatics may actually win. I have serious doubts on where humanity will be in 30 years time.

    • Fighting vicious wars over the last remaining livable strip of land as the ice encroaches from north and south. Trying to keep greenhouses pumped full of CO2 to grow plants which can no longer survive in the CO2 depleted atmosphere, while politicians are calling for increased taxes on water vapor.

    • We now have lots of experience with wind and solar, mostly bad. example

      The realization is dawning on more and more people that wind and solar can’t work. My hope is that the promise of Small Modular Reactors (SMR) will satisfy the public demand that we ‘do something’ until the CAGW fraud has run its course.

      • grief ? Where are you ??
        The permit for three wind turbines in the Butzbach municipal forest granted by the Giessen Regional Council on 12 October 2018 is illegal. After the discussion meeting on 22.01.2020, the permit was revoked by the Administrative Court on 28.01.2020. The environmental association Naturschutzinitiative e.V. (NI) had taken legal action against the State of Hesse primarily because in its opinion the permit violates European law. For example, exceptions to the ban on killing wasp and buzzard were permitted which are not compatible with the European Birds Directive.

        “This ruling is an important milestone for European nature and species conservation and in Germany,” said Harry Neumann, regional chairman of the Nature Conservation Initiative e.V. (NI). The environmental association was successfully represented by the law firm Habor, Göttingen.

        More information will follow as soon as the reasons for the ruling are available.

        Translated with http://www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
        German source

      • Where is grief ?
        He wouldt tell you other things 😀

        The permit for three wind turbines in the Butzbach municipal forest granted by the Giessen Regional Council on 12 October 2018 is illegal. After the discussion meeting on 22.01.2020, the permit was revoked by the Administrative Court on 28.01.2020. The environmental association Naturschutzinitiative e.V. (NI) had taken legal action against the State of Hesse primarily because in its opinion the permit violates European law. For example, exceptions to the ban on killing wasp and buzzard were permitted which are not compatible with the European Birds Directive.

        Translated with http://www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
        German source

  3. Last year – Developing countries demand repayment from the Western world for altering the climate unintentionally and causing weather disasters….

    Next year – Developing countries demand repayment from the USA for altering the climate intentionally and causing weather disasters….

  4. I’m applying for a grant to paint all of the UK roads and pavements white, my company of which I am the non-executive chairman will be employing 1000 climate science graduates to do the work. It is estimated that a repaint will be required every couple of years, job for life.

    • Vuk: If you wait long enough, it’ll snow. It doesn’t get whiter than that, right? Your problem is that you don’t want the snow to melt. So, you need a transparent insulator. What better than the miracle gas CO2, best insulator in the known universe, right? And you can see right through it, right? So the streets will stay white, right?

      But how do you keep the CO2 in place? Look man, I’ve already solved a bunch of BIG problems for you. Your turn to do part of the work.

      Just remember, when the grant money to flesh out this concept comes rolling in, part of it is mine.

  5. Apart from the stupidity of the ideas, do we even have enough of any of this to pump into a 5 quadrillion ton atmosphere to effect any changes (I think that is the size of the atmosphere I read once)?

  6. What is Fahey’s geoengineering plan to warm the planet?
    Global cooling seems to be as likely as warming, given the ~7000 year downtrend in global temps.

    Planning to modify our atmosphere to halt natural processes is evidence of megalomania in these geoengineering scientists.

  7. interesting they admit that contrails DO affect the skies..
    that was pretty damned easy to see when 9 11 got the planes down and the skies were clean and clear blue briefly
    just 3 or 4 planes flying over my rural area on a clear sunny day are enough to create a high level light mist dimming the sunshine for the rest of the day

  8. These methods would be temporary requiring continuous injections into the atmosphere.

    I like Iron fertilization, seeding the oceans with iron to promote plankton growth. This would remove CO2 from the atmosphere. This would/could buy the world time to find ways to reduce CO2 production.

    It might work within 12 years and thus save the planet.

  9. I think this quote from the 70’s rock band Blue Oyster Cult is appropriate here:

    History shows again and again
    How nature points up the folly of man
    Godzilla!

  10. We are going to reintroduce acid rain to save the planet ?

    Ka equivalent rating: Sulphuric Acid H2SO4 is 1.0 x 103 which is 2.27 Billion times stronger than Carbonic Acid CO32- is 4.4 x 10-7 (which is quite pleasant to drink – soda water – common to all fizzy drinks – is as “bad” as it gets).
    So H2SO4 acid rain represents a threat 2.2 billion times worse than man’s CO2 production and to save humanity from the ravages of CO2 we are going to add more sulfuric acid ???

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acid_dissociation_constant

    Someone explain the logic of this madness.

  11. I would suggest a test volcano in Boulder.

    Engineers showed us what a lab explosion looks like while trying to melt ashflow tuffs during the money gold rush days to study Yucca Mountain, before it became politically dormant. They forgot about the volatile components of rocks in the furnace.

      • That was before the internet but I knew about it from others in the Geol. – GeoEng. – Mine Eng. Departments at the time.

  12. Norman Blanton January 29, 2020 at 6:49 am
    …and thus save the planet.

    We need to be saved from the climate lunatics.

  13. Faustian nonsense! King Cabute’s courtiers will applaud from their graves
    However a controlled experiment might be interesting . Do this above Kirabati perhaps but then winds would blow all your reagents hither and thither and also beware of chaos and butterflies.
    If the greenies really want a more sparsely populated planet and if their apocalyptic scenarios are correct then business as usual will wipe out 6 billion of us randomly selected.
    On the other hand if so called “deniers”like me are correct thn the deindustrialisation that XR want will wipe out 6 billion of us carefully selected by a UN super bureacracy who allocate the precious resources to the great the good and their cronies. Personally I prefer the former .
    Just to finish on a cheery note -75 anniversary of liberation of Aushwitz and some people want to recreate it on a planet wide scale.

  14. And there are people out there that actually fear GMO’s but are all in for this. Doublethink and flat out stupidity are the major threat to this planet….

    • An excellent point Sheri. We can’t trust man to tinker with our food but we can trust him to tinker with the air we breath. I swear Public Schools grade on a stupid scale. The worse your score the faster you advance to a Federal Loan Guaranteed college indoctrination. Where they offer degrees in “Things That Just Ain’t So.”

      Courses Include: Making Protest Messiahs, Protest Messiahs -Real or Imaginary?, How to score government grants, Sailing the Planets Oceans for fun and profit. How to create imaginary hobgoblins.

      Extra curricular activities include: Organizing Protest marches, Sign making for Protesters, How to sneak attack using pepper spray,

      Post Graduate studies: Building a Social Media presence for Hobgoblins, Grants for Hobgoblins: how to score the big money with a B. Careers in Yellow Journalisming: How to promote Hobgoblins. Careers in Education: Primary School – dumbing down the individual, Secondary School – building ignorant into consensus groups, High School to College: Indoctrination or How to convince consensus groups of Hobgoblins. Post Graduate: Slaying hobgoblins with other peoples (taxpayers) money.

    • Sheri
      More than half of adults have IQs less than 100. There are a disproportionate share who go into politics.

  15. On the effects of sea salt particles, how much of such is injected into the atmosphere during extreme weather events?

    • Go to a beach on a onshore windy day. You can see the salt spray as a fine mist. Much of that will dry and be lofted by turbulence up to the cloud base. A big storm will produce uncountable trillions.

      Global temperature is controlled by strato-cumulus cloud — my contention is that we have reduced wave breaking by light oil smoothing of the oceans and hence cloud formation. One to two percent reduction in cloud cover is enough to explain all the warming. It also explains Wigley’s blip.

      JF

  16. Seriously stupid ideas now being paid for by national government.
    There are so many real everyday issues that need funding and sorting without looking for globally dangerous experimentation.
    Why is it always megalomaniacs and lunatics that strive to find the final solution…?

  17. All of this based on the CO2 miracle molecule, the unproven retainer of the earth’s collected heat. Where is the real proof?

    • It can pretty much be shown in a laboratory and with some further calculation that a tube containing 400 ppm CO2, then increased to 800 ppm CO2, with an IR input of 240 watts/sq. M will warm by 1.2 degrees C, if perfectly insulated from its surroundings. In the real world, the heat convects away from that laboratory tube, eventually released to outer space, and the temperature rise in the tube is about a tenth of a degree. In “ climate model world” the 1.2 degrees is tripled because of water vapour humidity increase at 1.2 degrees warmer ground level temperature. This leaves one questioning which parts of the experiment are analogous to Earth’s atmosphere.

      simplified version here. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=kGaV3PiobYk

      • Doubt it. Never seen such an experiment do anything other than show massive amounts of CO2 provide some warming over no CO2.

      • DMacKenzie
        What happens in the initial experiment of doubling the CO2 if the tube also contains a few percent of water vapor?

      • What you are saying is complete nonsense. Show me these alleged laboratory experiments. It doesn’t match up with my calculations based on specific heat. The video is complete nonsense. Those cameras don’t ‘read’ 15 microns. There is no way CO2 would ‘hide’ a peak of 8 microns. The reason the camera dimmed is possibly, because there was a coating of paraffin or something on the lens.
        If you buy into that nonsense you should go back to middle school .

  18. The best science US bureaucracy can buy – from the deep state, by the deep state. Your tax dollars hard at work.

  19. The second approach, using an aerosol of sea salt particles, would probably require thousands of “specialized ships”, but how would they be powered? Using fossil fuels would probably negate, or at least greatly diminish, any positive benefits. Would the ships each have a wind turbine and be covered with solar panels?
    Obviously, this method is ridiculous. Note that present day ocean freighters are not powered in this fashion! How would the ships be controlled in a storm? etc. etc.

    • Search for Salter and Latham cloud ships. They are wind powered. IIRC Flettner rotors are one suggestion.

      JF

  20. And what happens when a large volcano erupts, pouring huge amounts into the atmosphere on top of what was put in there? Nuclear winter?

    • “And what happens when a large volcano erupts,”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Pinatubo

      “Pinatubo is most notorious for its VEI-6 eruption on June 15, 1991, the second-largest terrestrial eruption of the 20th century after the 1912 eruption of Novarupta in Alaska” . . .

      “The effects of the 1991 eruption were felt worldwide. It ejected roughly 10,000,000,000 tonnes (1.1×1010 short tons) or 10 km3 (2.4 cu mi) of magma, and 20,000,000 tonnes (22,000,000 short tons) of SO2, bringing vast quantities of minerals and toxic metals to the surface environment. It injected more particulate into the stratosphere than any eruption since Krakatoa in 1883. Over the following months, the aerosols formed a global layer of sulfuric acid haze. Global temperatures dropped by about 0.5 °C (0.9 °F) in the years 1991–93,[7] and ozone depletion temporarily saw a substantial increase.”

      end excerpts

      So, how far do these geoengineers want to reduce the temperatures? How many Pinatubo’s do they have to artificially simulate and perpetuate in order to reduce temperatures 1C from where we are right now? I kind of like the temperatures we have right now.

  21. Wait just a minute, Mr. David Fahey . . . your slip is showing. Why don’t either of your two proposed emergency solutions involve rapid reductions in atmospheric CO2, which is after all the “go to” explanation for global warming, per “scientific consensus,” and in fact is given as such in the above article’s first paragraph. Or is CO2 not a factor at all?

    The NASA Apollo program demonstrated that lithium hydroxide was very effective at removing CO2 from the atmosphere of crewed spacecraft. Isn’t a far simpler solution—one with much lower environmental risk than the two approaches you’ve stated—to embark on emergency manufacture of mass quantities of LiOH (or less-expensive sodium hydroxide, which I understand also scrubs CO2 quite well).

    Heck, quantities of CO2 scrubbing salts could even be placed downstream of large wind turbines (for enhancing reaction rates via turbulent air cross-flow) so some added value can be extracted from these monstrosities.

    Tell you what, my proposed “emergency solution” is being provided to you for free (so as to save the planet, don’t you know), but if you have, say, $100,000 remaining from that $4 million grant for an honorarium, I won’t refuse it.

    • NaOH is about $600/ton in contrast to sulfur which is about $100/ton as sulfur and half that cost as SO2.

      NaOH is commonly made by the chloralkali process involving electrolysis. It requires a lot of energy and complex equipment. Yes it’s possible to use it to absorb CO2 but efficiency is poor, and the absorbers and liquid wastes that are generated will need to be managed (hydroxide salts are hygroscopic). LiOH as you note is even more expensive.

      Ammonium ion could be used to with sulfur to create AS aerosols that would not be acidic like sulfuric acid, but that would add cost and complexity. There are piles of stranded sulfur in many parts of the world just for the taking.

        • You are raising a false dilemma. The planet has already existed for 4 billion years longer than mankind. The notion that we can save it is hubris at best.

          My position is that there is no climate crisis. However, as a scientist, I love experiments, and I do think there are valid concerns that others have raised here and these should be addressed.

          However, even though I am skeptical of the need for geoengineering, the cost of this research program is small, especially compared to taking steps like Gore or Mann, etc. propose which will cost trillions and do more harm than good to people, especially the poor.

          We already engage in cloud seeding, which is a form of weather modification. What is wrong to attempt to do some research that will improve our understanding of the impact of aerosols?

          • Gordon Dressler: “When it comes to saving planet Earth, cost should not be consideration . . . or should it?”

            Skissor: “You are raising a false dilemma. ”

            I don’t think you get sarcasm either. Or a rhetorically asked, tongue in cheek question …

  22. Climate geoengineering will eventually turn out to be Yucca Mountain site studies times 1,000 in research to nowhere. And that in itself is a small offshoot of climate research funding streams out there already.

  23. But in a sign of how controversial the topic is, Fahey recommended changing the nomenclature from geoengineering to “climate intervention,” which he described as a “more neutral word.”

    Prb’ly all 4 million will go to “revising” the word geoengineering to “climate intervention” in all the books and electronic media. And family members of the “climate change scientist” will somehow get the job…..

  24. The very idea of addressing the problem by studying methods of climate cooling always seems to bring out the worst in people, but by being sensible about this we can delay the foolhardy and dangerous dash for renewables and the banning of the things that can lower global temperatures without killing billions of people. Maybe.

    Let me explain.

    The global warming problem is not with warming, not with the science, not even with the snouts in troughers who are cleaning up: it’s a political problem. As such it needs a political solution.

    Until the science sorts itself out — it’s a right bugger’s muddle at present with true science bogged down in a PR battle against unscrupulous opponents who are playing a more polished and effective PR game, running rings round scientists who just have science on their side. Common-sense is losing with ever more extreme solutions being threatened, but the proposed solutions are not sensible and not practical. The political way out of this trap is to prepare emergency measures but not to deploy them on a large scale, holding them in reserve in case a real crisis emerges — my guess is it won’t but those who are panicking think otherwise.

    Here’s the message: there is no crisis yet. We don’t think there will be. However, renewable energy will not avert a crisis if that were to emerge, so we need to be ready, just in case. Our insurance policies are

    1) Nuclear power. We will design a new generation of nuclear reactors, SMRs that could be produced in a worldwide crash programme in just a few years. Until then we will convert heavy goods vehicles to compressed natural gas — a low carbon solution — and produce the gas by increasing the rate of fracking while we research zero carbon alternatives. We intend to be ready to convert the world to zero carbon energy rapidly, cheaply and more reliably than using renewables.

    2) We will build a few cloud ships which will produce non-polluting salt aerosols — the same aerosols that every breaking wave produces by the trillion – to counter the effects of pollution on aerosol production. Google Salter and Latham.

    3) We will research the effects of ocean oil pollution on wave breaking, and chemical and land run-off pollution which may be reducing di-methyl sulphide aerosol production by poisoning phytoplankton.

    These measures mean that if a crisis shows signs of developing then we will be prepared. Until then there is no need to close down civilisation. Our solutions will be researched, prepared but not deployed. Compared to the cost of closing down conventional power stations, a few hundred million dollars is chicken-feed.

    JF
    I have a post at Independence Daily entitled DO NOT BE AFRAID: NO CRISIS, NO CATASTROPHE which expands on this. And BTW, the idea of injecting sulphur dioxide into the atmosphere is completely barking mad.

    • Julian Flood:

      “the idea of injecting sulphur dioxide into the atmosphere is completely barking mad”

      But we have already been doing that, since the start of the Industrial Revolution when we began burning fossil fuels.

      • The idea is to inject it into the stratosphere to make aerosols that reflect sunlight. Our terrestrial emissions that make aerosols get mostly washed out before they reach such heights.

  25. There is an error in the headline. It should read:

    Politically-favored Researcher Gets $4 Million Virtue-signaling Grant from Congress.

  26. We have entered the post-reasoning/reasonableness stage of the Climate Crusades. Therefore many have gone to the get rich while the getting is good mode and the rational adaptation.

  27. First of all the only evidence that SO2 provides any cooling is via massive injection into the stratosphere by VE6 or greater tropical volcanoes. Given this evidence it is unlikely the low altitude injection from burning of coal had any effect on the climate whatsoever.

    We might be able to have some effect if we could provide an additive to jet fuel that reflected sunlight. That would also be financially reasonable as the jets are all flying anyway. And, it could be stopped at any time it was determined to be a problem.

    • “First of all the only evidence that SO2 provides any cooling is via massive injection into the stratosphere by VE6 or greater tropical volcanoes. Given this evidence it is unlikely the low altitude injection from burning of coal had any effect on the climate whatsoever.”

      That was my position back when we were having the “Human-Caused Global Cooling” discussion in the 1970’s. That’s still my position..

      • Tom Abbott;

        A massive volcanic eruption is not required to see a change in average global temperatures.

        If a plot of ENSO temperatures is carefully examined, you will see a temp. change for essentially all VEI4-VEI7 eruptions (and occasionally for a VEI3 eruption), regardless of location.

        The amount of change is, of course, primarily affected by the magnitude of the eruption.

        You also say that it is unlikely that the low altitude injection of SO2 from the burning of coal had any effect on the climate whatsoever.

        It has had a tremendous effect upon the climate, and along with other anthropogenic SO2 emitters, has probably exceeded that of the Pinatubo eruption.

    • It looks like bubbling oatmeal. The description said each “bubble” was about the size of France.

  28. The most affordable and productive geoengineering is adding a little iron sulfate to key ocean ecosystems. It’s already been demonstrated.

  29. The very idea of addressing the problem by studying methods of climate cooling always seems to bring out the worst in people, but by being sensible about this we can delay the foolhardy and dangerous dash for renewables and the banning of the two things that can lower global temperatures without killing billions of people. Maybe.

    Let me explain.

    The global warming problem is not with warming, not with the science, not even with the snouts in troughers who are cleaning up: it’s a political problem. As such it needs a political solution.

    Until the science sorts itself out — it’s a right hamburger’s muddle at present with true science bogged down in a PR battle against unscrupulous opponents who are playing a more polished and effective PR game, running rings round scientists who just have science on their side. Common-sense is losing with ever more extreme solutions being threatened, but the proposed solutions are not sensible and not practical. The political way out of this trap is to prepare emergency measures but not to deploy them on a large scale, holding them in reserve in case a real crisis emerges — my guess is it won’t but those who are panicking think otherwise.

    Here’s the message: there is no crisis yet. We don’t think there will be. renewable energy will not avert a crisis if that were to emerge so we need to be ready, just in case. Our insurance policies are 1) Nuclear power. We will design a new generation of nuclear reactors, SMRs that could be produced in a worldwide crash programme in just a few years. Until then we will convert heavy goods vehicles to compressed natural gas — a low carbon solution — and produce the gas by increasing the rate of fracking. We will be able to convert the world to zero carbon energy rapidly, cheaply and more reliably than using renewables.
    2) We will build a few cloud ships which will produce non-polluting salt aerosols — the same aerosols that every breaking wave produces by the trillion – to counter the effects of pollution on aerosol production.
    3) We will research the effects of ocean oil pollution on wave breaking, and chemical and land run-off pollution which may be reducing di-methyl sulphide aerosol production by poisoning phytoplankton.

    These measures mean that if a crisis shows signs of developing then we will be prepared. Until then there is no need to close down civilisation. Our solutions will be researched, prepared but not deployed. Compared to the cost of closing down conventional power stations, a few hundred million dollars is chicken-feed.

    JF
    I have a post at Independence Daily entitled DO NOT BE AFRAID: NO CRISIS, NO CATASTROPHE which expands on this.

    • re:

      Our insurance policies are 1) Nuclear power. We will … Until then we will convert heavy goods vehicles to compressed natural gas …. We will be able to convert the world to zero carbon energy rapidly, cheaply and more reliably than using renewables.
      2) We will build a few cloud ships which will produce non-polluting salt aerosols … counter the effects of pollution on aerosol production.
      3) We will research the effects of ocean oil pollution on wave breaking, and chemical and land run-off pollution which may be reducing di-methyl sulphide aerosol production by poisoning phytoplankton.

      “Straight-line projection” again; Haven’t you ppl learned your lesson yet? Take a look around you, look deeper at what’s around the corner, within the realm of possibilities, get out of your ‘old paradigms’ …

  30. The longer version of the article says that an experiment will be made to release about 1 kg of calcium carbonate into the air over New Mexico and see what effect it has on the climate underneath the release (before it is dispersed by the wind).

    Of course, New Mexico has a rather dry climate, so that the CaCO3 released will tend to remain in the atmosphere for a long time and may block sunlight. How that can be extrapolated to a more humid climate, where the CaCO3 particles will tend to nucleate water vapor into clouds and rain, is anybody’s guess.

    One further problem with trying to use solid particles in the air to block sunlight is how to lift them into the atmosphere. Solid particles are heavier than air and tend to precipitate to the ground (either washed down by rain or simply gravity settling in a dry climate), so if scientists want to replenish them, some energy must be used in lifting them into the atmosphere, either by plane (which consumes fossil fuels) or hot-air balloon (which uses some fuel to warm the air in the balloon), and this energy consumption also generates CO2 emissions.

    Has anyone calculated whether the warming effect of the CO2 will wipe out the cooling effect of the suspended solids?

  31. Who would have thought it? /sarc
    All we have to do to save the planet is to add varying amounts of sulfur as an input to every coal-burning power station and we have the ultimate “climate control knob.”
    Now let’s agree what the optimum CO2 concentration is, and then the “climate crisis” is over.
    Cancel COP26, cancel XR protests, cancel all subsidies for “renewables”, and stop funding all the university “climate research” departments.

  32. $100 million available to study geoengineering solutions you say? In that case I need grant money to study the feasibility of using explosives on highly active volcanoes to encourage them to blow, that should give us an all natural (nothing better than a natural solution) aerosol output to fight CAGW. Of course those small eruptions might not be big enough to offset CAGW so we better be prepared to use nukes on Yellowstone if this whole global warming thing gets really bad.

    Once I’ve spent the entire $100 million on feasibility studies I can move into Phase 2, experimental stage. I’m afraid that will take billions but I promise to start in on small volcanoes at first just in case things don’t work out like I had planned. /sarc

  33. It is amazing to see a group of people all convince each other that it would be a good idea to go out and interfere with and probably wreck a system that has been functioning perfectly for billions of years. It is similar to setting your house on fire to improve comfort in winter.

  34. Who needs to make the risky trip to Mars when we can make it here?

    [to George] “The Forbidden Zone was once a paradise. Your breed made a desert of it, ages ago.”
    ……Planet of the Apes (1968)

  35. T^4 (Literally: “T” to the fourth)

    Thermal radiation from a ‘source’ is proportional to Temperature to the 4th power.

    Remember that.

      • Is the significance of T^4 (literally: T to the fourth power) lost on you, Russ Wood?

        Let’s have a dialogue to see where the ‘root’ of your problem lay …

  36. re: “The top climate change scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said he has received $4 million from Congress

    And we’ve got a cast of “bright boys” on here who insist a certain Dr. Randell L. Mills is pulling ‘a fast one’ (WITH private investor funds!!!) regarding his ‘venture’ with a Hydrinos …

    Gentleman, can I suggest you “adjust your fire” to where it is really needed?

    • At least two Nobel laureates in physics have called Mills ideas poppycock or worse. Are they “bright boys?”

      And you, are you an employee of BLP, investor, relative? All the so called reports of Mills that you posted and which are within my areas of expertise are shit, i.e. it shows that he or his technologists are incompetent at best.

      • re: “All the so called reports of Mills that you posted … ”

        You’re a most determined idiot, aren’t you? You haven’t even begun TO SCRATCH the surface of the reports written by Mills over the past two decades plus on a VARIETY of subjects, so blinded by RAGE and OUTRAGE as you presently display the most obvious symptoms of.

        LET”S go back to a question I posed earlier – WHAT are Dr. Mills achievements academically, THEN we’ll move onto his technical achievements, and breakthroughs. BTW, you can’t compare to what he has achieved, NOT EVEN A FRACTION thereof in the academic sphere.

        • Actually, I have a Ph.D. in chemistry and I am not an idiot.

          Like Mills I was accepted to an Ivy League school. I chose to go into physical sciences research and have remained in that field for my entire career. Mills went to medical school and then for whatever reason doesn’t practice medicine. That is strange, but then he invents a theory that says overthrows quantum mechanics. That is very bizarre.

          Nevertheless, criticism of his work by Nobel laureates in physics has not been addressed by Mills. And you don’t answer any questions that I ask of you. I am being honest and you are being deceptive.

          Mills scam has been going on a lot longer than two decades. Like Rossi, he’s piggybacked onto global warming as a reason/need for his great invention. Like Rossi, it is promises made and promises broken over and over. They both have a cult like following as well as paid promoters.

          • re: “Actually, I have … ”

            Let’s give Mills a fair shake from the academic side first, for the benefit of those ‘watching at home’, then we’ll take a look later (sometime) at what’s he’s discovered and accomplished WITH his education.

            Randell L. Mills, in brief –

            1973 – 1985 served as CEO and General Partner of Mills Brothers Grain Company while engaging in undergrad studies. While recuperating from an accident (wherein he fell through/into a plate glass window) that required hospitalization Mills became quite interested in ‘things medical’.

            Graduated Summa_Cum_Laude, B.A. in 1982 from Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania.

            Member of the Black Pyramid Honor Society and the Phi Beta Kappa National Honour Society where he was the only Junior invited to join in that year.

            Received the Willig Pentathlon Prize in Chemistry, one of the oldest and most prestigious awards in chemistry first established in 1912 which is awarded to the senior major who scores the highest on an exam covering the General, Analytical, Organic, Inorganic, and Physical areas of Chemistry.

            He also received the:

            o Michael A. Lewis Memorial Prize in Physics,
            o the Isaac E. Roberts Biology Award,
            o the Rawnsley Science Award,
            o the Morgan D. Person Prize in Chemistry,
            o the Fredrick C. Schiffman Award in Chemistry and
            o the Theodore Alexander Saulnier Award in Chemistry.

            Accepted into Harvard Medical School on the basis of his outstanding academic achievements and was awarded his medical degree in 1986.

            Proceeded to study electrical engineering under Professor Hermann Haus at MIT during his medical internship year to further his technical education.

            At Harvard Medical School he was mentored by Dr. Carl Walter, a professor of surgery and a prolific inventor and researcher in his own right who encouraged Mills to focus on invention and commercialization

            ——————————–
            .

            ALL THIS is a far cry from A. Rossi.

            .

      • re: “At least two Nobel laureates in physics have called Mills ideas poppycock or worse.”

        Oh yeah, and logical fallacy: “appeal to authority”.

        Robert L. Park (of APS fame) was, and is a numpty on this subject; refusal to review the experimental data/lab work on the subject earns one that title and distinction.

        • You do a good job showing that Mills is obviously intelligent. However, a lot of crooks and crazy people are intelligent. Ted Kaczynski went to Harvard at age 16.

          You use appeal to authority all the time, but you won’t address the actual criticisms that Park and the Nobel physicists have made against Mills. You won’t answer my questions to you.

          Mills has real credentials and is probably smarter than Rossi, who got at least one of his degrees from a diploma mill. Rossi is also a convicted felon and I don’t think that Mills is yet. However, there are many similarities between the scams they are running.

  37. Geoengineering or climate intervention is a bad idea and must be resisted and prevented. The thought of cooling the earth is as insane as pumping carbon dioxide underground or connecting windmills and solar panels to a grid.

    • They are operating under the presumption that climate is warming and will continue to do so. They don’t want so much to cool the earth but rather to stop it from warming.

      Aerosols wash out over time.

      • Scissor:

        “Aerosols wash out over time”

        This is true of intermittent sources.

        However, most emitting sources, such as factories, foundries, home heating units, internal combustion engines, etc., etc. are quasi-continuous, so that those that wash out are quickly replaced, giving their emissions into the troposphere an essentially infinite lifetime, until they are either shut down, or modified to reduce emissions.

        Apart from some natural warming as the Earth warms up after the Little Ice Age, all of the warming that has occurred since global Clean Air efforts began in the 1970’s has been due to our reductions in the amount of Anthropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions–exactly as happens when the SO2 aerosols from a volcanic eruption eventually settles out, and temperatures recover to pre-eruption levels

        The simplest solution to our warming problem (which is not caused by CO2 or changes in solar irradiance), would be to judicially relax restrictions on industrial SO2 aerosol emissions to replace some of what we have taken out of the atmosphere.

        But injecting into the stratosphere would probably avoid Acid Rain and other adverse effects.

  38. Complete lunacy…

    On a related topic, would it be lunacy to use fracking in the most quake prone zones like Calif, on the most “dangerous” spots? Has it been seriously discussed?

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