Tim Flannery, author of The Weather Makers and Australias best-known global warming expert, yesterday released a new climate forecast. Since his last major forecast in 2005, he has projected a direr outcome and in turn suggests consideration of radical solutions to the global warming phenomenon, including dimming through sulphur.
Professor Flannery spoke at a business and sustainability conference at Parliament House in Australia on Monday. He has brought to national media attention new science results that show how the world is more susceptible to and affected by greenhouse gas emissions; more so than has ever been considered previously. For Flannery, greenhouse gases that are present in the atmosphere today are already having too great an impact, regardless of changes made to emission levels in the future.
"The current burden of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere is in fact more than sufficient to cause catastrophic climate change." Cutting emissions is no longer considered sufficient. We now face the task of how to remove greenhouse gases out of the air with scientific solutions. The need to act is extremely urgent and Prof. Flannery has suggested a range of solutions, including dimming via the use of Sulphur.
By inserting sulphur gas into the earth's stratosphere it would be possible to protect the earth from the suns rays and slow global warming, he has predicted. Professor Flannery admitted that this would change the colour of the sky" and that there would be risks associated with this process.
One alternative proposed is for sulphur to be injected into the atmosphere by incorporating it with jet fuel. Professor Flannery advised that this technique would need to be implemented in five years time, especially if the current path of polluting and inability to combat a warming globe continues.
Other measures promoted by Professor Flannery were presented at the conference, such as the conversion of carbon from the air to charcoal, increased economic incentives for planting forests in tropical zones by poor farmers (through the eBay scheme for example) and underground storage of carbon emissions. He also specifically mentioned the impact of industrialisation in China and encouraged technology sharing by nations to manage climate impact.