Sun's rays deflection test marks a climate change mitigation milestone

Scientists conducted the first outdoor test in the U.S. of a technology aimed at brightening clouds to reflect sunlight away from the Earth.

Christopher Flavelle reports for The New York Times.


In short:

  • The experiment took place on a decommissioned aircraft carrier in San Francisco Bay, testing a machine designed to spray salt aerosols into the atmosphere.
  • This initiative is part of broader research into climate intervention strategies as traditional efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions fall short.
  • Critics express concerns over the unpredictable consequences of manipulating natural systems on such a scale.

Key quote:

“You could well be changing climatic patterns, not just over the sea, but over land as well. This is a scary vision of the future that we should try and avoid at all costs.”

— David Santillo, senior scientist at Greenpeace International

Why this matters:

Solar geoengineering aims to decrease the amount of solar energy that reaches the Earth's surface, thereby cooling the planet. This method does not address the root cause of climate change—such as greenhouse gas emissions—but rather seeks to temporarily lessen its symptoms.

Ideas to dim the sun 'ignore the root cause' of the climate crisis – and create a cascade of unintended problems, scientists and activists say.

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Alaskan rivers turning orange due to climate change

Climate change is causing Alaska’s rivers to turn orange, posing serious risks to the state's ecosystems and rural communities.

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Amid LNG’s Gulf Coast expansion, community hopes to stand in its way

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Heat waves threaten power grid stability with potential blackouts

Prolonged heat waves could increasingly cause blackouts by overheating power transformers, particularly in California, Arizona, Nevada, and Texas, new research indicates.

Harry Stevens reports for The Washington Post.

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Young Alaskans file lawsuit to halt massive gas export project

Eight Alaskan youths are suing the state over a $38.7 billion gas export project, arguing it violates their constitutional rights by exacerbating climate change.

Dharna Noor reports for The Guardian.

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Data gaps in US territories threaten climate resilience

Federal agencies often neglect to collect data in U.S. territories as comprehensively as they do for states, jeopardizing climate adaptation and mitigation efforts, a new GAO report reveals.

Anita Hofschneider reports for Grist.

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Health risks increase as Brazil’s floodwaters recede

The first two deaths from leptospirosis have been reported in southern Brazil as floodwaters recede, with experts predicting a surge in fatalities.

Gabriela Sá Pessoa reports for The Associated Press

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