Scientists from the University of Cambridge are goingto create a new scientific center that will study the issues and develop technologies that allow to "fix" the Earth's climate. Researchers are going to consider, among other things, very radical geoengineering approaches to solving the problem of climate-catastrophic climate changes, for example, by re-freezing the poles of our planet and removing CO2 from its atmosphere.
According to the BBC news agency,The impetus for the creation of such a scientific center was the fear of scientists that the current approaches to preserving the environment will not be able to stop the dangerous and irreversible damage to the planet by human activities. The authors of the project believe that their initiative is the first of its kind and in the future it can really lead to a significant reduction in emissions and carbon concentrations in the atmosphere.
The project is coordinated by former Sir David King, a former British government scientific advisor.
"Over the next 10 years we will determine the futurehumanity for the next 10,000 years. There is no such science center in the world that would deal with such issues, ”said King in a conversation with BBC journalists.
Some examples of ideas described by King andThe perspectives that can help us solve the problem under discussion are more related to so-called geoengineering. Dr. Emily Shakburg, who describes the main task of the center as “solving climate problems”, will manage the Earth Climate Recovery Center.
“We have to do this. And we have no margin for error, ”the scientist comments.
It is noted that not only climate scientists will work in the center, but also engineers and sociologists.
“We are facing one of the most difficult and important tasks in our history, and we must approach its solution with all the responsibility and diligence,” said Schakburg.
Secondary pole freeze
One of the most promising ideas related tofreezing of the poles consists in “lightening” the clouds above them in order to increase their reflectivity. To this end, it is proposed to pump seawater with high hydrants installed on unmanned ships and spray it. So microscopic particles of salt water will create clouds themselves, which reflect light well, thus cooling water and air below them.
The scheme of processing CO2 into fuel
Another approach is a variation of the scheme, whichcalled carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS). This means taking carbon dioxide emissions from coal or gas power plants or steel mills and dumping them underground.
Now Professor Peter Styring from the UniversitySheffield is developing a carbon capture and disposal pilot scheme (CCU) with Tata Steel in Port Talbot in South Wales. As Stayring himself points out, the scheme envisages the creation of an installation that converts carbon dioxide emissions into synthetic fuel using thermal energy and functions directly on site.
"We have sources of hydrogen, carbon dioxideand heat, as well as renewable energy sources on the planet. We are going to combine all this and begin production of synthetic fuels, ”he shared with the BBC.
Another idea that comes into scopeA new research center is planting algae at the bottom of the oceans so that they can absorb more carbon dioxide. Such schemes imply dispersion of iron salts over ocean waters, which will promote the growth of plankton. However, there is one "but": previous studies and experiments have shown that algae are not able to absorb carbon dioxide in the right amount, and such actions can disrupt the ecosystem. Nevertheless, there are those who believe that such a risk is fully justified. According to Professor Callum Roberts of York University, those approaches that are currently considered to be beyond the scope of the possible should be considered and, if possible, implemented. And all because the alternative of destructive and potentially irreversible climate change is in any case no better.
"At the beginning of my academic career, people were terrifiedreacted to more interventionist approaches to coral reef conservation. Now the same people in despair look at the current state of the ecosystem, which will simply disappear by the end of this century, and now agree on any options, just to protect nature, ”- comments Roberts.
Examples of these options aregenetically modified corals with increased resistance to elevated temperatures, as well as spraying chemicals in the oceans to make it less acidic.
"At the moment I believe that the useNature itself to mitigate the effects of climate change is the best option. At the same time, I see the possibility of considering even more radical measures as means that will provide us with the possibility of a more comfortable future, ”adds Robert.
Think of the unthinkable
All of these approaches can result in multipledangerous consequences for the planet, but scientists are confident that they still need to consider, assess the possible negative outcome, and also think about how to implement them with minimal damage. At the same time, some scientists believe that reducing carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere alone will not improve the situation on the planet.
“If we limit ourselves to reducing CO2 emissions inthe atmosphere, then only slow down the global temperature rise. There is no sense in it, since the average global temperature is already quite high due to excessively large carbon dioxide emissions, ”said Peter Wadhams, a professor of ocean physics at the University of Cambridge.
“A more integrated approach and recoveryclimate will remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. By reducing its level, we will really cool the climate and return it to the values before global warming, ”adds the scientist.
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