Abstract: Increasing concerns about the climate have led many scientists to ask whether schemes to intentionally ‘engineer’ the climate at large (regional to global scales) might be able to moderate at least some of the worst negative impacts of GHG-induced climate change. In principle, such geoengineering technologies might be of great utility for insuring the most vulnerable (and generally least responsible) states and peoples against worst-case scenarios. However, as with GHG-induced climate change, distribution inequities in impacts and access to relevant technologies could easily impede the realization of such utility. This talk will begin with an overview of the latest science underlying prominent geoengineering proposals, and then explore the socio-political and ethical issues associated with the development of and control over geoengineering technologies.
Dr Jason J. Blackstock is a Research Scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (Austria) and a Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation (Canada). His research broadly explores the intersection of science and international affairs, with a current focus on scientific and socio-political implications of geoengineering technologies. Jason has received his Master of Physics (Edinburgh, 2001), his PhD in physics (Alberta, 2005), his Graduate Certificate in International Security (Stanford, 2006), and his Master of Public Administration (Harvard, 2008).