CRAZY BRAVE IDEAS TO SAVE THE WORLD
With the UN warning of climate catastrophe, it’s increasingly looking like a case of when, not if, we will reach for the once unthinkable fix: geo-engineering, or artificially hacking the climate. Some climate hacking has moved beyond the research labs. In Switzerland, a tart-up builds giant fans that suck carbon from the air. It’s then sold to a greenhouse where it’s absorbed by plants to make them grow faster. In the not too distant future, imagine sprinkling iron filings into the seas to encourage carbon eating plankton…or sending armadas of ships to pump sea mist into the sky to diffuse the sun’s rays…or using high-altitude balloons to scatter sulphur in the atmosphere to lower the temperature – a bit like what happened naturally after the Mt Pinatubo volcano erupted in 1991. All these and more are on the drawing board. They sound like science fiction, but radical remedies to slow global warming are on the way.