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Geoengineering Is in the Air

Levitt recently wrote about geoengineering going mainstream — i.e., being featured in the M.I.T. Technology Review. That fine publication may not be as “mainstream” for the rest of us as it is for Levitt. But now NBC Nightly News has weighed in on the topic. There’s nothing in the piece that will surprise anyone who’s read SuperFreakonomics, and it discusses some of the oldest and least practical modes of geoengineering as opposed to the ideas put forth by Nathan Myhrvold and his team at Intellectual Ventures (see this recent Myhrvold interview by Fareed Zakaria, titled “Climate Change Freakonomist”). But it’s interesting to see such a complicated and controversial topic start to get a public airing. Of course if the Mayon volcano in the Philippines turns into a Mount Pinatubo-size eruption, then we’ll probably be hearing a lot more about how sulfur dioxide in the stratosphere — whether put there by nature or by scientists — cools the earth.
(Hat tip: Daniel Lippman.)