Scientists have come up with a strange new plan – and it involves refreezing the North and South Poles and lowering the global thermostat with 125 jets.
The high-flying jets could spray microscopic aerosol particles into the atmosphere to help reflect sunlight and cool melting ice caps.
Around 175,000 flights a year would be needed to achieve this, releasing millions of tons of carbon dioxide.
However, a former British chief scientist backed the plans and said Sky News that polar warming is essential and that ice refreezing could slow global sea level rise.
Wake Smith led this new study at Yale University in the United States.
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He said the plan would address an acute symptom of climate change but not the ultimate cause.
“It’s aspirin, not penicillin. It’s not a substitute for decarbonization,” he said.
In this plan, 125 military air-to-air tankers would release a cloud of microscopic sulfur dioxide particles at an altitude of 43,000 feet (13 km) at 60 degrees in both hemispheres.
The particles will then slowly drift poleward on high-altitude winds, which would slightly shadow the Earth’s surface below.
The plan is controversial due to the large number of flights which accounts for around two days of global air traffic in 2021.
This would release greenhouse gases into the upper atmosphere, causing more damage.
Furthermore, the £10 billion per year cost of the initiative would be much lower than carbon capture or other means of adapting to change, the researchers add.
“Any intentional change to the global thermostat would be of common interest to all of humanity,” Smith said.
Both poles are warming considerably several times faster than the global average.
And earlier this year, record heat waves were reported in the Arctic and Antarctica.
The Center for Climate Repair (CCR) is working on a strategy in its labs to help clear up clouds over the Arctic Ocean.
Additionally, a fleet of ships pumps seawater into the atmosphere. Clouds would reflect sunlight back into space, causing ice cooling.
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