(ORDO NEWS) — The startup claims to have launched meteorological balloons that may have released reflective sulfur particles into the stratosphere, thus breaking the ban on solar geoengineering projects.
Geoengineering refers to the deliberate effort to manipulate climate by reflecting more sunlight back into space, mimicking the natural process that occurs after major volcanic eruptions.
Theoretically, spraying sulfur and similar particles in sufficient quantities could potentially alleviate global warming.
It is technically easy to throw such compounds into the stratosphere. But scientists have largely (though not entirely) refrained from doing even small experiments outside of laboratories under real atmospheric conditions.
Little is known about the real consequences of such deliberate interventions on a large scale, and they can have dangerous side effects. In addition, in some regions the impact may be stronger than in others, which can provoke geopolitical conflicts.
Scientists are extremely concerned that Make Sunsets appears to have moved ahead with launches from a site in Mexico without any public or scientific oversight.
The company is already trying to generate revenue from the cooling effects of future flights. He proposes selling $10 “cooling credits” for releasing one gram of particles into the stratosphere – enough, he argues, to offset the warming effect of one tonne of carbon for one year.
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