What is it?
Geoengineering is defined as large scale climate control using deliberate altering and guidance techniques on the environment to help control and eliminate global warming and its effects. The purpose of geoengineering is to convert the current climate so temperatures due to the effects of global warming will drop. Current methods, mainly the minimization and moderation of greenhouse gas emissions, have not proven to be entirely successful and have not reduced the climate change as well as originally hoped. Geoengineering is an alternative to this process.
How does it work?
There are two main classifications of geoengineering. These are Carbon Dioxide Removal and Solar Radiation Management. Carbon Dioxide Removal does what the name suggests, removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, using several different techniques. The removal of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reduces the insulation effects greenhouse gases have on the Earth, reducing the effects of the sun and lowering the temperature. Solar Radiation Management does not affect the levels of carbon dioxide but rather reflects the suns light away from the Earth thereby lowering the temperature in the atmosphere.
The theory behind geoengineering is that if nothing is done about the rate at which the current climate is rising in temperature, drastic measures may have to be taken. The geoengineering theories are considered to be a last resort. They have not been researched well enough that all of the consequences and lasting ramifications are understood. Further research and technology are needed to balance the pros and cons of these proposals before they can be accepted into general practice.