Global climate change in an accepted phenomenon by an international community of respected scientists. However, due to a vocal group of corporate interests and their enablers, climate change-deniers, concrete action to combat greenhouse gas production has been slow in coming. An international cap-and-trade system was on the table in climate change talks in Copenhagen, in 2010, but the United States failed to meaningfully act within the conference to take concrete steps, preferring a non-binding resolution that did not advance any international action regarding climate change. The US was also a non-signer of the Kyoto agreement, an international treaty regarding climate change.
Climate Change Solutions
In the absence of action from leaders, people have been banding together for small- and large-scale actions to signal their dissatisfaction with unpredictable, extreme weather, including droughts and storms and the international instability that will inevitably occur as resources become unpredictably scarce. At the same time, scientists have proposed “geoengineering” solutions to experimentally change the earth’s features and weather to stave off climate change. It’s truly a rock and a hard place. The international community has been found insufficient to do anything about this impending problem. Geoengineering, well it may be promising, offers another top-down solution that maybe sensibly predicts no change forthcoming to prevent mean temperatures from rising.
Everyone has a dog in this fight. We all live on this planet and its climate ensures out existence. Anyone from environmental activists to organic farmers to regular folks who practice conservation do their part to combat global climate change. Several large anti-climate change groups have emerged, such as Bill McKibben’s 350.org, which promotes non-violent civil disobedience actions to protest and educate about the threat of climate change and posit a way to get something done about it.
Geoengineering at Home
Geongineering is an effort to directly manipulate the earth’s climate to mitigate climate change. It is a new practice and studies for methods have only recently begun. Methods can involve carbon sequestration (the physical capture of carbon emissions and their storage), solar radiation management, which only mitigates the effects of increased solar radiation and not its causes and arctic geoengineering, which seeks to prevent the rapidly decrease and eventual loss of polar ice sheets
Small-scale geoengineering, such as tree-planting projects and “cool roofs,” an effort to paint roofs reflective colors, like white, are already under way.
It should be mentioned that geoengineering is sometimes supported by think tanks and groups that have been the biggest opponents to solutions regarding climate change. Perhaps they see it as less of a threat to their bottom lines than widespread conservation.