Dr. Matthew Watson, a PhD and researcher in the department of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol has recently expressed his concerns regarding spraying various chemicals into the atmosphere in order to combat the effects of global warming.
Dr. Watson is also the principal investigator and researcher for the SPICE project (Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering). SPICE is a United Kingdom government funded geoengineering research project that collaborates with the university of Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh and Bristol to further examine the idea of Solar Radiation Management (SRM) – which is the idea that injecting stratospheric aerosols into the atmosphere could combat global warming. It’s a multi-million dollar project to, again, pump chemicals into the atmosphere to reflect the sun’s rays. (source)
“We are swimming, growing, in a sea of ignorance. This terrifies me. But doing nothing is not an option. Unless we’re very wrong about climate change or quickly change our ways, at some point we’re going to have to ‘go outside’ with these technologies.” Dr. Watson (source)
Anybody who is concerned about environmental degradation, pollution, and climate change should definitely be aware of geoenigneering. For those who are unaware, geoengineering is – as defined by the Royal Society in 2009 as: “the deliberate large-scale manipulation of the planetary environment to counteract anthropogenic climate change.” (source)
According to the BBC:
“Schemes to tackle climate change could prove disastrous for billions of people, but might be required for the good of the planet” (source)
Dr. Watson recently told the Daily Mail that he is ‘terrified’ of what this type of technology could potentially do to Earth. He expressed how these technologies will become inevitable if humanity fails to halt global warming.
“If we ever deploy these technologies it will be the closest indication yet that we’ve failed as planetary stewards. While it is clear that temperatures could be reduced during deployment, the misstep is considerable. Personally, this stuff terrifies me.” – Dr. Watson (source)
Geoengineering could cause irreversible damage to planetary ecosystems, as well as human health. It will also be:
“Much more expensive and challenging than previous estimates suggest and any benefits would be limited.” – Professor Piers Forester from the University of Leeds.
Scientists like Dr. Watson have admitted that this type of technology could lead to large scale damaging changes in the Earth’s climatic systems. It could lead to changes in rainfall patterns, droughts, floods and more.
“We are swimming, drowning, in a sea of ignorance. This terrifies me, but doing nothing is not an option.” –Dr. Watson (source)
Some of the candidate particles to spray in the air proposed by SPICE are (source):
- Sulphate/Sulphuric Acid/Sulphur Dioxide
- Silicon Carbide
- Calcium Carbonate
- Zinc Oxide
Some of the key concerns regarding spraying these particles into the atmosphere are not only the potential detrimental effects on Earth’s climate, environment and natural systems, but also the potential effects on human health. These concerns (and more) are currently being and have been examined by various scientists, researchers and institutions around the world.
Here is the general gist of the main idea regarding Solar Radiation Management (SRM) :
Here is a document produced by the Department of Engineering at Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University that outlines some more concerns many scientists are having with this idea.
Is Large Scale Spraying Already Happening?
Although Dr. Watson did mention to the Daily Mail that these programs are not operational, that an in depth assessment and evaluation of the risks involved still need to be examined, many believe this type of activity is already taking place.
“In recent years there has been a decline in the support for weather modification research, and a tendency to move directly into operational projects.” – World Meteorological Association (source)
Weather modification programs have been operational for decades. Although it might not be large scale climate engineering, this type of activity, as Dr. Watson points out, has been happening since the cold war. (source)
The weather was even modified in China for the 2008 olympics. (source)
The idea of spraying stratospheric aerosols into our atmosphere to combat global warming has been around for a while. A great example of this is a patent from the Hughes Aircraft Company that dates back to 1990. It contains 18 claims to reduce global warming through stratospheric seeding with aluminum oxide, thorium oxide and refractory Welsbach material. You can view that patent here.
Here is a United States government document from the National Archives that was printed at the request of the United States Senate In November of 1978 that outlines some of these programs.
Here is a document outlining the history of weather modification programs that was prepared by Dr. Vermeeren, a professor at the Delft University of Technology.
“We do stuff in the stratosphere all the time off-course, so it’s not absolutely pristine. But you don’t want to have people going off and doing things that involve large radioactive forgings, or programs that go on for extended periods or for that matter provide lots of reactive surfaces that could results in significant ozone destruction.” – M. Granger Morgan, Carnegie Mellon University and Professor of Engineering. (Taken from the first film cited below)
It seems that these programs have been contemplated for more than 50 years, and possibly operational.
Another factor that has people questioning if spraying is already happening is the fact that many of these programs are backed by the department of defence. As a result this type of thing becomes a ‘national security’ issue and remains legally ‘classified.’ (source)
“In addition to specific research programs sponsored by Federal agencies, there are other functions related to weather modification which are performed in several places in the executive branch. Various federal advisory panels and committees and their staffs – established to conduct in-depth studies and prepare reports, to provide advice or recommendations, or to coordinate weather modification programs – have been housed and supported within executive departments, agencies, or offices.” (source)
People seeing trails in the sky that are thick, remain in the sky, spread out during the day and block the sun could be one of the biggest reasons many believe this type of atmospheric spraying is already happening, including myself. Some have argued and provided evidence that these are not and cannot be just ‘contrails.’ Others have argued that they are indeed just that, but it’s hard to believe that that’s all they are if you are an avid observer of the skies.
There have also been some great documentaries released within the past couple of years that examine this issue more in-depth. If you are interested in this subject I highly recommend them. The two listed below go into detail about various concerns that’ve been raised with regards to geoengineering and Solar Radiation Management.
These documentaries game from www.geoengineeringwatch.org/
The list goes on and on as to why many people seem to believe these programs are already in operation. Many also seem to believe that there is some sort of ulterior motive that goes beyond weather modification and combating global warming. What are your thoughts on this subject? Feel free to share them in the comments section below.
All sources are embedded though out the article.
About the Author
Arjun Walia: I joined the CE team in 2010 and have been doing this ever since. There are many things happening on the planet that don’t resonate with me, and I wanted to do what I could to play a role in creating change. It’s been great making changes in my own life and creating awareness and I look forward to more projects that move beyond awareness and into action and implementation. So stay tuned 🙂 [email protected]
Credits: **This article was originally featured on Collective-Evolution.com