Scientists consider engineering Earth’s atmosphere

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AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Some scientists worry that something must be done to limit the damage from climate change are considering a controversial process to minimize the negative effects. But a UMass professor 22News spoke with doesn’t support the findings in a new report.

The National Academy of Sciences published the report which proposes injecting the air with sulfur pollution to reflect the sun’s heat. The process outlined in the report would theoretically create an artificial cloud to deflect the sun’s rays. Advocates say it could be a cheap, effective way to change the planet’s climate. But others like Michael Rawlins, an assistant professor of Geo Sciences at UMass Amherst, are worried it could have dangerous, unforeseen future impacts.

“The injection of aerosols into the stratosphere to limit warming, it’s really not such a good idea, there’s a lot of uncertainties. We don’t know if whether injecting these aerosols might reduce rain fall.” Other opponents argue once this process is started, it might be impossible to stop it.

The fear is that the solution might be worse than the problem they’re trying to fix; spraying particles into our atmosphere could cause a new kind of pollution for the next one thousand years.

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