Stupid Geoengineering Idea of the Week, No Year, No Decade…of All Time?

by Charles Rotter at

Perched on sea-ice off Canada’s northern coast, parka-clad scientists watch saltwater pump out over the frozen ocean.

Their goal? To slow global warming.

As sea-ice vanishes, the dark ocean surface can absorb more of the Sun’s energy, which accelerates warming. So the researchers want to thicken it to stop it melting away.

Welcome to the wackier side of geoengineering – deliberately intervening in the Earth’s climate system to try to counteract the damage we have done to it.

I can’t even.

They are drilling a hole in the sea-ice that naturally forms in winter, and pumping around 1,000 litres of seawater per minute across the surface.

The ultimate goal of the Arctic experiment is to thicken enough sea-ice to slow or even reverse the melting already seen, says Dr Shaun Fitzgerald, whose team at the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Climate Repair is behind the project.

At least the BBC talked to some semi-sane people.

“It is quite insane in my opinion that this could be done at scale for the entire Arctic Ocean,” says Julienne Stroeve, a professor of polar observation and modelling at University College London.