The growing problem of changing environmental conditions caused by climate destabilization is well recognized as one of the defining issues of our time. The root problem is greenhouse gas emissions, and the fundamental solution is curbing those emissions. Climate geoengineering has often been considered to be a “last-ditch” response to climate change, to be used only if climate change damage should produce extreme hardship. Although the likelihood of eventually needing to resort to these efforts grows with every year of inaction on emissions control, there is a lack of information on these ways of potentially intervening in the climate system.
Authors: Panel on Aerosol Radiative Forcing and Climate Change, National Research Council
Description: This book recommends the initiation of an “integrated” research program to study the role of aerosols in the predicted global climate change. Current understanding suggest that, even now, aerosols, primarily from anthropogenic sources, may be reducing the rate of warming caused by greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to specific research recommendations, this book forcefully argues for two kinds of research program integration: integration of the individual laboratory, field, and theoretical research activities and an integrated management structure that involves all of the concerned federal agencies.