Rex Tillerson clearly stated his views of climate change during remarks in 2012 at an event sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations.
“And as human beings as a — as a — as a species, that’s why we’re all still here. We have spent our entire existence adapting, OK? So we will adapt to this. Changes to weather patterns that move crop production areas around — we’ll adapt to that. It’s an engineering problem, and it has engineering solutions. And so I don’t — the fear factor that people want to throw out there to say we just have to stop this, I do not accept.”
Geoengineering now seems to have become the de facto climate policy of the Trump White House and the GOP as they, on the one hand, deny the apparent fact of climate change, and on the other hand, prepare to fight it by employing poorly tested technology with unknown long term effects!
In Conservative circles, seductive but superficial reasoning exists for Geoengineering being so popular. One is that on a large scale, it can make several corporations and individuals very rich. Another is that the effects of carbon based fuels can be downplayed by government and industry now. After all, any atmospheric heating caused by burning fossil fuels and a buildup of carbon dioxide can be minimized by employing geoengineering technologies. In short, the current state of Conservative thinking, Jobs, Jobs, Jobs translates into Burn, Burn, Burn.
Globally, the atmospheric carbon dioxide level reached 403 ppm this year (it held between 180 ppm and 290 ppm for the previous 800,000 years). Even so, fossil fuels still reign supreme as the power source of world economies. With no end in sight for the abatement of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels or the employment of alternative/renewable power sources, carbon dioxide levels will continue to rise. Planet cooling by geoengineering will just mask the warming effects of elevated carbon dioxide levels. At some point, as yet undetermined, Earth will depend upon geoengineering to remain within livable limits. It is apparent that once we are hooked on geoengineering in a world with high atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, any cessation of geoengineering efforts will be accompanied by rapid and severe global climate changes to unacceptable levels.
Obviously, clear thinking is in short supply. At best, geoengineering is the environmental equivalent of the opioid crisis and at its worst it is applied asininity, if not a downright “Faustian Bargain” of epic proportions.
If you want deeper insight into geoengineering and the climate emergency, please read the following:
- J. R. Lince-Hopkins, Artist and Biologist, LynxNorth Studio, Chaska, MN.