Tuesday, January 05, 2010

The Dangerous Allure of Climate Change Technofixes

Diane Dumanoski writes: "The moral and political hazards of geoengineering are as formidable as the physical dangers." Serious geo-engineering proposals should not be ignored - but they involve speculations, not proven technologies (think "clean coal"). As Dumanoski argues, "former President George W. Bush often used future technology as an excuse for inaction, touting research on hydrogen fuel-cell 'freedom cars' while rejecting proposals to improve the efficiency of today’s vehicles. One energy economist quipped, the freedom car 'is really about Bush’s freedom to do nothing about cars today.'” And the idea peddled by Dubner, Levitt et al. that these proposals are not highly problematized by thorny questions of politics and governance is silly and dangerous.