L. Cao, C. Gao, L. Zhao
Geoengineering (also called climate engineering), which refers to large-scale intervention in the Earths climate system to counteract greenhouse gas-induced warming, has been one of the most rapidly growing areas of climate research as a potential option for tackling global warming. Here, we provide an overview of the scientific background and research progress of proposed geoengineering schemes. Geoengineering can be broadly divided into two categories: solar geoengineering (also called solar radiation management, or SRM), which aims to reflect more sunlight to space, and carbon dioxide removal (CDR), which aims to reduce the CO2 content in the atmosphere. First, we review different proposed geoengineering methods involved in the solar radiation management and carbon dioxide removal schemes. Then, we discuss the fundamental science underlying the climate response to the carbon dioxide removal and solar radiation management schemes. We focus on two basic issues: 1) climate response to the reduction in solar irradiance and 2) climate response to the reduction in atmospheric CO2. Next, we introduce an ongoing geoengineering research project in China that is supported by National Key Basic Research Program. This research project, being the first coordinated geoengineering research program in China, will systematically investigate the physical mechanisms, climate impacts, and risk and governance of a few targeted geoengineering schemes. It is expected that this research program will help us gain a deep understanding of the physical science underlying geoengineering schemes and the impacts of geoengineering on global climate, in particular, on the Asia monsoon region.
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Published on 19/07/16
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license
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