Environment: Scientists plan to manipulate the climate

Environment: Scientists plan to manipulate the climate


Video length: 4 minutes

France 2
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Thanks to the massive discharge of sulfur from the stratosphere, a team of scientists wants to lower the global temperature. A risky project according to others, as it could cause uncontrollable weather disturbances.

A balloon filled with a few grams of sulfur has been sent into the atmosphere to try to cool our planet. This is an amazing experiment done by a novice American in the field. If the initiative resembles the imagination of a novice magician, then the topic is very serious and of interest to the scientific community. Artificially modifying the climate to mitigate global warming is Geological engineering. In the US, researchers have a project to send large balloons between 12 and 50 kilometers above our heads, into the stratosphere. The goal, however, is not to get rid of a few grams, but tons of sulfur.

“dangerous” project

The idea is to reproduce what happened after the eruption of a volcano in the Philippines. In 1991, Pinatubo released millions of tons of sulfur, causing the global temperature to drop by half a degree for two years. To produce such an effect today, then, it would be necessary to continuously pour astronomical amounts of sulfur gas. Impossible and above all risky, because it can lead to changes in the circulation of the atmosphere. More rain, floods in some places, more droughts in others. For the majority of scholars, these projects should be abandoned. What we need to do is reduce greenhouse gas emissions, instead, we will continue to emit greenhouse gases and we will add additional gases, so this is a bit dangerous.”Cathy explains clipodirector of research at CNRS.

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