Bill Gates chucks cash at climate cooling cloud creator
$7bn nautical chill pills
Boffins want to curb climate change by building a $7bn fleet of 1,900 ships to crisscross the oceans as each sucks up ten tons of seawater per second and blasts it a kilometer into the sky to create clouds to absorb sunlight and cool the earth.
And Bill Gates is funding them. No, really.
The Times Online reports that a San Francisco research group with the cloudy name of Silver Lining has received $300,000 from the billionaire mosquito terrorist and tiny-nuke pusher to fund research into the aforementioned geoengineering project.
Sailing over a school of sardines is not recommended (source: Inhabitat)
The Times notes that the US and UK scientists involved in the project witnessed the wimpiness of climate change–fighting agreements (or lack of same) coming out of last year's Copenhagen conference, and decided that it'd be global seppuku to wait for international action.
So they're going it alone: Ships + pumps = gushers. Gushers + clouds = cover. Cover = cooling.
Well, actually not merely clouds, but clouds that have been made more reflective due to the insertion of squillions of microscopic water droplets, says principal researcher Armand Neukermanns. According to his analysis, this geoengineering idea is "the most benign" because its effects could be easily reversed, unlike other ideas such as, say, salting the upper atmosphere with reflective sulfate particles.
The first test of this theory will involve ten ships scuttling around 3,800mi2 of ocean. According to the Times, however, to get the whole scheme up and contributing effectively to ratcheting down the earth's fever, the fleet would need to be 1,900-ships strong.
Neukermanns didn't mention whether the ships would be diesel-powered. ®
And in 50-odd years the headlines will read "Turn everything on! Heat the planet before we all freeze to death!"
This idea is, of course, is nothing more than a salve to the American conscience. Something to make the Yanks think it is still A-OK to drive their 5-litre behemoth the 250 metres to the gym every other day. Because, yea, there is a ship at sea "off-setting" all that "heat".
Why not just blast a giant filter into space, place it between us and the sun. You could even make the opacity controllable. Heck, I am sure a clever person could even use it to write messages "Today brought to you by XYX Ltd. Yes, we commoditised the sun".
Either way, it amounts to the same thing. The Yanks can keep chugging that oil down (until the local supply runs low, then it's just a few wars to secure more) and do the square root of feck all to actually help the situation. Same holds true for China, S.Korea etc and will hold true for India et al.
Unless a politician can see a way of getting a tax from it, they don't care. In Europe we have the taxes, but they don't go to investment in viable renewables or anything. Nope, it's there to subsidise the champagne. You can tell that because the idiots still can't make up their mind where to have the EU parliament. If they really did see global warming (or whatever they call it this week) as a threat they would stay put in ONE building. And not a new one at that. Something recycled.
I suggest Sealand.
Then we can torpedo it and be done with the entire horde of parasites.
[Note to the CPS: The last line is not to be taken as a serious threat to torpedo Sealand or any other [ex-]military structure. Nor is is to be taken as a serious threat to attack MEPs or any of their unelected and secret committees. It is meant in as a satirical (well, OK, sarcastic) statement and a point of discussion, nothing more.]
Not thought through
I guess they didn't read the bit in their Dummies Guide to Climate Engineering about water actually being a greenhouse gas, so if you're increasing the amount of water vapour at lower altitudes, some will be forced up to higher altitudes where its less humid simply by natural equilibriums, and at these higher altitudes it will keep more heat inside the atmosphere.
Then there's the weather influences these actions will have, the most obvious detrimental effect would be flooding, perhaps even flash floods, and the legal repercussions of this once the damage is determined to be from a cloud formed by these machines. There's also the question of how much impact this will have on regional and global climate processes over the short term, will it affect crop growing seasons, will the increased cloud cause rain to fall before it reaches areas it used to reach, thus creating new arid regions.
IMO this seems as badly thought out as the idea several years ago of just dumping millions of tons of iron dust into the oceans to encourage algal blooms (consuming CO2, but using up nutrients and killing whole areas of the ocean ecosystem). Natural systems operate in a fine balance, they can counteract or stabilise changes over a long period (hence past climate change), but its far better for us to reduce our impact on the climate than to try and tinker with these systems even more in the hope that we fix something, and can carry on polluting without a care.
Long range weather forecast
Rain, rain rain and cloudy weather.
So not much change there. Although I'm not clear what or who gives this guy the right to turn off the sunshine for the whole planet. Maybe he should try it out near the shores of California and Florida first, see how the people who caused most of this problem like it when their holidays get clouded over.