The great paradox: Decreasing air pollution has INCREASED global warming because clean air doesn’t contain aerosol particles that reflect sunlight and cool the Earth.
- Current pollution levels are 30 percent lower than in 2000.
- However, this has resulted in increased warming from carbon emissions.
- Scientists have found that there is less fog in the atmosphere that blocks solar radiation
- They propose using solar technology to launch aerosol particles into the atmosphere in an attempt to fight climate change.
Scientists have discovered a great paradox in nature: clean air contributes to global warming, while pollution cools our planet.
A group of international researchers have determined that current levels of pollution are 30 percent lower than in 2000, but warming from carbon dioxide emissions has increased by 50 percent.
Contaminant particles such as sulfates or nitrates are known for their reflective properties and are commonly found in exhaust gases.
The team, in desperation, proposes to turn to aerosols again, but using a controversial type of geoengineering.
The technique, called solar engineering, involves firing sulfate particles into the stratosphere, which in turn create reflective haze around the globe.
A study from the University of Leipzig brings good news for human health – these particles are linked to millions of deaths each year – but bleak for what the future holds for humanity.
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Although pollution has decreased by 20% since 2000, warming from carbon emissions has increased.
The team found that ocean warmth has increased since 2000, which, again, they say, is due to the adoption of policies around the world to reduce aerosol use.
Johannes Kuaas, a climatologist at the University of Leipzig and lead author of the study, told Science.org that the study was carried out using instruments on NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites, which collect data about the Earth’s atmosphere.
These devices also collect information about radiation entering and leaving the Earth, allowing the study to understand the increase in infrared heat trapped by greenhouse gases.
And another instrument on the satellites showed a decrease in reflective light coming from the Earth.
Scientists used NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites (pictured) to study the atmosphere and found that there is less haze because the air is cleaner. Less Haze Means More Radiation Penetrates
Venkatachalam Ramaswami, director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, told Science.org that there can only be one explanation for this: cleaner air. Dynamics Laboratory. “It is very difficult to find other reasons for this,” he said.
All of this data allowed the team to analyze haze in the atmosphere, which allowed them to determine that haze over North America, Europe, and East Asia abruptly disappeared from 2000 to 2019.
The results prompted the idea of returning pollution particles to the atmosphere, which would in turn reflect solar radiation back into space and ultimately limit or reverse anthropogenic climate change.
The team, in desperation, proposes to turn to aerosols again, but using controversial geoengineering. This method was proposed as part of the Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment, which is funded by Microsoft founder Bill Gates.
This method was proposed as part of the Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment, which is funded by Microsoft founder Bill Gates.
This $3 million initial test will use a high-altitude science balloon to lift about four pounds of calcium carbonate dust — about the size of a sack of flour — into the atmosphere 12 miles above the New Mexico desert.
This will seed a tubular patch of sky half a mile long and 100 yards in diameter.
Over the next 24 hours, the balloon will be driven by propellers back through this artificial cloud, its onboard sensors monitoring both the dust’s ability to reflect the sun and its effect on the thin ambient air.
However, SCoPEx has been put on hold due to concerns that it could set off a series of catastrophic chain reactions, creating climate chaos in the form of severe droughts and hurricanes, and causing death to millions of people around the world.
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