Harrabin’s Notes: Spending $250bn

In his regular column, the BBC’s environment analyst Roger Harrabin draws on his experience of a quarter of a century reporting the environment to assess the thesis of two veteran environmentalists who believe the Copenhagen climate meeting will not deliver results.

Planet engineering

One particularly controversial priority of the panel is is research into “cloud whitening”, which involves spaying tiny droplets of water into ocean clouds in order to increase their reflectivity.

The UK Met Office says this could disturb regional weather systems. And a 10-month Royal Society report on geo-engineering this week said although cloud whitening had advantages, there were many questions to be answered.

Marine scientists complained that cloud whitening fails to combat ocean acidification – the “other” CO2 problem, and could even make it worse.

The panel is the latest to be convened by Dr Lomborg, author of 1998 book The Skeptical Environmentalist, whose work was previously strongly supported by The Economist magazine.

BBC News, 4 September 2009. Full article.

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