Climate & Geoengineering

Geoengineering is the intentional, large-scale technological manipulation of the Earth’s systems, often discussed as a techno-fix for combating climate change. Climate geoengineering technologies can be divided into three broad areas: so-called solar radiation management (reflecting sunlight to space), greenhouse gas removal and sequestration and weather modification.

Geoengineering can refer to a wide range of techniques, including: blasting sulphate particles into the stratosphere or 'whitening' clouds to reflect the sun’s rays; dumping iron particles in the oceans to nurture CO2 -absorbing plankton; firing silver iodide into clouds to produce rain or genetically engineering crops so their foliage can better reflect sunlight.

ETC Group opposes geoengineering and other false solutions to climate change (e.g., proprietary, genetically-engineered 'climate-ready' crops ) and supports peasant-led agroecological responses to the climate crisis.

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Geoengineering refers to technologies designed to intervene in and alter earth systems on a large scale – particularly proposals to manipulate the climate system as a ‘technofix’ for climate change. Geoengineering can refer to a wide range of schemes, including: blasting sulphate particles into the stratosphere to reflect the sun’s rays; dumping iron particles in the oceans to nurture CO2- absorbing plankton and genetically engineering crops so their leaves might reflect more sunlight.

ETC Group publishes a world map of geoengineering -- the large-scale manipulation of earth or climate systems. While there is no complete record of the scores of weather and climate control projects in dozens of countries, this map is the first attempt to document the expanding scope of research and experimentation. Almost 300 geoengineering projects/experiments are represented on the map belonging to 10 different types of climate-altering technologies.

International effort to address the  food, energy and climate crisis tend to regard technology as an important part of the solution. This optimism about technology also prevails in debates around the Green Economy and international environmental governance. And of course technology does hold some potential solutions to some important problems.