Geoengineering - the deliberate large-scale intervention in the Earth's natural systems to counteract climate change - is a contentious subject and rightly so.
The Oxford Geoengineering Programme seeks to engage with society about the issues associated with geoengineering and conduct research into some of the proposed techniques. The programme does not advocate implementing geoengineering, but it does advocate conducting research into the social, ethical and technical aspects of geoengineering. This research must be conducted in a transparent and socially informed manner.
They are: The Integrated Assessment of Geoengineering Proposals (IAGP) in partnership with The University of Leeds, Cardiff University, Lancaster University, University of Bristol, University of East Anglia, The Tyndall Centre and the UK Met Office; Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering (SPICE) in partnership with The University of Bristol and Cambridge University; and Climate Geoengineering Governance (CGG), a recently announced Oxford-led project in partnership with The University of Sussex and University College London which will examine the governance and ethics of geoengineering.
About the banner image: This image depicts an area of temperate rainforest on Vancouver Island, Canada that is untouched by human activity. Ecosystems like this rely on delicate balances in climate variables which are increasingly threatened by greenhouse gas-driven climate change. The deployment of geoengineering technologies may present the only chance for some especially vulnerable ecosystems to maintain their integrity in the face of irreversible damage. It may also present significant risks to these natural systems due to unintentional or unforeseeable side-effects. Image credit: Tim Moore (2006).