Right now, a group of scientists is working on ways to minimize the catastrophic impact of global warming. But they’re not designing hybrids or fuel cells or wind turbines. They’re trying to lower the temperature of the entire planet – and fast. That takes imagination, inventiveness and the implementation of ideas that seem like plots ripped from zany Sci-Fi movies. It may sound outrageous, but these forward-thinking few are building huge contraptions that suck CO2 from the air, machines that brighten clouds to deflect sunlight away from the earth, even artificial volcanoes that spray heat-reflecting particles into the atmosphere.
Welcome to the radical and controversial world of geoengineering.
Jeff Goodell is a contributing editor for Rolling Stone and a frequent contributor to The New York Times Magazine. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller Our Story: 77 Hours That Tested Our Friendship and Our Faith. Goodell’s memoir, Sunnyvale: The Rise and Fall of a Silicon Valley Family, was a New York Times Notable Book. His most recent book, Big Coal was The Universty of North Texas’s 2009 pick for One Book One Community.