I saw this article today in the Rolling Stone magazine– speaking about scientist Lowell Wood, and his ideas about simulating a volcanic eruption over the North Pole with sulfur ash. This would be done in order to stabilize the rising temperature there. He thinks we can grow the polar ice cap this way, and create a whole-earth thermostat.

At first blush, it seems problematic, as it does nothing to alter the rising CO2 levels, it only effects temperature. And, if I understand correctly, the ocean is suffering in part because of increased CO2 concentrations outside of temperature (is this correct?) Not to mention, any side-effects of the sulfur.

However, if some kind of kooky scheme such as this were necessary to avert a 20 foot rise in sea level, would it be a good strategy?

Perhaps something like this would work well in concert with an aggressive 30-year transition to renewables?

If a massive engineering enterprise (albeit distributed and haphazard) was what got us to this point- is it reasonable to consider that a massive engineering enterprise would aid in getting us out of this dilemma?

Somehow it’s easier to be comfortable with the idea of a distributed uncontrollable engineering project (our fossil fuel era) wrecking things, as it represents the choices of billions of agents, each acting alone in a dance of infrastructural mega-complexity.

However, if we did a massive planet scale geoengineering project, it would just be a few people making a decision that would effect the whole globe. It’s a strange new concept.