We know that one of the biggest problems facing human beings in this century is climate change. The increase in global average temperatures is causing changes in the climate worldwide. The status consequences can be catastrophic and should be avoided at all costs. For this, it has created the geoengineering. Many people do not know what geoengineering is or what it is trying to do.

Therefore, in this article we are going to tell you what geoengineering is, what are its characteristics, objectives and much more.

What is geoengineering


Geoengineering refers to a set of technologies designed for climate intervention in an attempt to "remediate" climate change. This discipline aspires to be technology on a planetary scale.

Science currently faces two challenges: absorbing carbon dioxide from the air so the atmosphere traps less heat, and reflecting more sunlight so Earth absorbs less heat.

This developing discipline has already led some researchers to investigate, through computer simulations or small-scale laboratory experiments, the contributions that the development of geoengineering will bring, as well as the risks it may bring.

In this profession the fields of knowledge of engineering, geography and computer science are combined, so It is a science that has always been debated as to the scope of its intervention.

Key features

what is geoengineering

One of the riskiest bets in the face of climate change is geoengineering, a concept that encompasses different technical proposals for manipulating the global climate to address some of the symptoms of climate chaos. It has environmental, social and geopolitical risks, but the biggest immediate risk is that it becomes an excuse for climate inaction: is used as an excuse for the continuation and increase of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), and promises that in the future there will be technologies to eliminate them or reduce the temperature.

It is an empty promise, since the vast majority of these ideas are only theoretical, and the few that are minimally developed in practice are prototypes, or do not work for various reasons. In no case will they be developed on a commercial scale or on a gigantic global scale to have a significant impact on warming.

However, geoengineering proposals are very attractive for polluting industries that contribute to high greenhouse gas emissions, such as fossil energy, mining, transportation, automotive, agribusiness, etc., and for the host countries of the large corporations that dominate these industries. They appear to be a hypothetical technological "fix" that would allow polluting activities to continue without facing the fundamental changes required in production and consumption patterns. At the same time, it opens up new resources and opportunities for trade, development and extraction.

Basically, they are a way to create a large global captive market: the causes of climate change continue, so the climate crisis continues to intensify, so selling technologies to control symptoms, if they work, opens up a world that, once started, cannot be held, mostly paid for by states. The push for the misleading “net zero” concept of offsetting emissions rather than reducing them is also a platform for geoengineering as a technological “fix”.

Geoengineering proposals

change the weather

Geoengineering techniques generally fall into three broad categories: those intended for the removal of carbon dioxide; those that try to reflect part of the solar radiation in space to reduce temperatures and those of local climate modification, to cause or avoid rain, hail, etc.

There are currently around 25-30 geoengineering proposals in these three categories., which propose to manipulate terrestrial, marine and/or atmospheric ecosystems. However, none of them attempt to address or modify the causes of climate change, but rather manage some of its symptoms.

Among the proposed technologies there are some that suggest injecting sulfates or other chemicals into the stratosphere to block sunlight, thus attenuating the radiation that reaches the Earth; whiten or brighten sea clouds so they reflect more sunlight back into space; developing facilities to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and burying it in oil wells or other geological formations on land and in the oceans; fertilizing the oceans with iron or urea to stimulate rapid growth of plankton in the hope that they will absorb more carbon dioxide and convert it to sink to the bottom of the ocean; changing the chemistry of the oceans with pulverized rocks to make them more alkaline; and planting large tracts of trees or genetically modified crops that are said to absorb more carbon or reflect more sunlight.

Can it really help fight climate change?

By far the most common proposals are those involving carbon removal and storage. Carbon capture and storage (CCS or CCS), an ancient oil industry technique used to access deep hydrocarbon reserves, paradoxically extracts more oil, which leads to more greenhouse gas emissions.

Proposals based on this technology, such as bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECAC or BECCS), involve growing huge plantations of trees or crops and then cutting/burning them to produce "bioenergy", which is then combined with CCS to capture carbon emissions from production. Likewise, direct air capture (abbreviated DAC or DAC) uses, for example, large fan units to filter the air and separate the CO2 with chemical solvents, then CCCs bury the carbon or reuse it for different products, so that it takes longer Sooner or later the CO2 will return to the atmosphere, so it should not be called "storage." The fossil fuel industry is very interested in all of these technologies and makes the bulk of the investments in these initiatives.

More recently, proponents of geoengineering have attempted to distance themselves from the term "geoengineering," either by proposing the technology alone or by stating that carbon dioxide removal technologies are so different from solar geoengineering technologies that they must be considered separately. While these technologies are really different from each other, what they all have in common is that they all propose large-scale technological manipulation of the weather.

name them individually it is a way of avoiding consideration of its greater regional or global impact, avoiding the necessary analysis of the synergistic effects that arise from the simultaneous application of several of these technologies, and most importantly, avoiding community and public generalization, right from the start realizing that these are high-risk technologies.

I hope that with this information you can learn more about what geoengineering is and its characteristics.

The content of the article adheres to our principles of editorial ethics. To report an error click here.

2 comments, leave yours

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *



  1. Responsible for the data: Miguel Ángel Gatón
  2. Purpose of the data: Control SPAM, comment management.
  3. Legitimation: Your consent
  4. Communication of the data: The data will not be communicated to third parties except by legal obligation.
  5. Data storage: Database hosted by Occentus Networks (EU)
  6. Rights: At any time you can limit, recover and delete your information.

  1.   Sergio said

    It is very interesting that geoengineering is discussed and images of the trails left by planes are shown. What at street level some call "chemtrails" or "chemical trails" in Spanish. Since they are shown, but not specifically talked about, I want to ask a question around them. Do they really exist? I mean, when seeing them, there are those who argue that they are the product of the mixture of gases at high temperatures and particles that cause condensation in these clouds in certain circumstances, while others argue that they are chemical products specifically launched from airplanes to alter the weather. As the article mentions, there are methods to cause rain or avoid damage from hail, but... are those contrails that we see the same? Is there an official source from which to verify it?

  2.   Caesar Salad said

    As always you shine for EXCELLENCE with these current issues, such as "climate change", which is already showing us its disastrous consequences (hurricanes, snowfall, floods, extremely low and high temperatures...) and the causes of this damage to the Planet they continue to propose long-term proposals and humanity suffers the consequences of the so-called "progress"... Greetings