Responding to Climate Change at the Poles: Findings from the National Research Council's Reports on Climate Intervention

Monday, 14 December 2015: 16:30
3005 (Moscone West)
Marcia K McNutt, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, DC, United States, Waleed Abdalati, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, United States, Ken Caldeira, Carnegie Institution for Science Washington, Washington, DC, United States, Scott C Doney, Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst, Woods Hole, MA, United States, Paul G Falkowski, Rutgers University New Brunswick, New Brunswick, NJ, United States, Steven Fetter, University of Maryland, School of Public Policy, College Park, MD, United States, James Rodger Fleming, Colby College, Waterville, ME, United States, Steve Hamburg, Environmental Defense Fund New York, New York, NY, United States, Granger Morgan, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, United States, Joyce Penner, University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI, United States, Raymond Pierrehumbert, Univ of Chicago, Chicago, IL, United States, Philip J Rasch, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, United States, Lynn M Russell, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, United States, John T Snow, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, United States, Jennifer Wilcox, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States and The NRC Geoengineering Report Committee
Earlier this year the National Research Council of the US National Academy of Sciences released a pair of reports on two strategies of climate intervention in order to reduce the risks of negative impacts from climate change. The first of the pair of reports discusses the opportunities and challenges in carbon capture and long-term, safe sequestration. The second report discusses several approaches to reflecting sunlight to cool Earth, including the risks, time scales, costs, and socio-economic, and political considerations. The primary conclusion from these pair of reports is that mitigation and adaptation are still our best choices in terms of cost and low risk for reducing harmful effects from climate change: there is no "silver bullet." Given that the polar regions of the planet are the most sensitive to climate change, the reports also touched on the potential for regional climate intervention. The majority of the methods that are currently under discussion and for which there is a body of peer-reviewed research would have global impacts, with but few exceptions.