Geoengineering - Geophysical Systems Warfare

Readers may have come across references to the idea of trying to solve the climate crisis with some sort of positive action, rather than by merely trying to back out of what we've done already. See Reduce Global Warming By Blocking Sunlight and Space Ring Latest Implausible Warming Solution for examples. Reducing carbon emissions will not get rid of the CO2 already in the atmosphere.

Other efforts are being made to give human beings direct control over Earth's "thermostat." For example, Nobel Laureate Paul Crutzen published a paper about injecting tiny particles into Earth's upper atmosphere Krakatoa-style to achieve solar radiation lowering similar to that seen after large volcanic erruptions.

But who would decide what methods to use? What about the unforeseen consequences of radical methods to alter Earth's climate? And how much power over climate should politicians and generals have?

You could also ask whether or not everyone on Earth has the same goals; Russian President Vladimir Putin has joked that gloabl warming might not be so bad (particularly if it reveals new oil and mineral deposits to be exploited).

Nation states seeking to affect climate deliberately might face opposing efforts. For example, if China decided that it liked the climate warmer, it could just burn more coal.

I think the most complete science-fictional reference to the idea of using geoengineering as a weapon is from the The War Against the Chtorr series by David Gerrold. The first novel, A Matter for Men, was published in 1984. At some point in the story, it starts to look like an alien species is trying to chtorraform the Earth, to make it more hospitable to alien life.

This idea is a variation on the notion of terraforming, a word coined by Jack Williamson in a 1941 short story. The idea itself was probably first suggested by Olaf Stapledon eleven years earlier in Last and First Men.

Update 06-Jan-2008: Thanks to readers who remembered the name of the movie; here's a screen shot of the earthquake machine from The Core.


(Destiny Earthquake Machine from The Core )

In the film, the creators of the Destiny system used the MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) reasoning as the basis for pursuing an earthquake-generating technology. End update.

There was also a recent movie in which (as I recall) geophysical forces were marshalled to cause earthquakes in designated countries. Hopefully, readers will refresh my memory.

Via Terraforming War, a very nicely-done article with lots of good references. See also Scientists weigh risks of climate 'techno-fixes'.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/3/2008)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 4 )

Related News Stories - (" Warfare ")

Slaughterbot AI KIller Quadcopter Drones
'The real border was defended by... a swarm of quasi-independent aerostats.' - Neal Stephenson, 1995.

Russia Working On Military Exoskeletons
'...you look like a big steel gorilla...' - Robert Heinlein, 1959.

TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...' - Robert Heinlein, 1959.

Britney Spears And Lynn Minmay - Weapons Of Choice
An attack can take many forms.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Purdue Pharma Ready To Profit From OxyContin Use Or Addiction Recovery
'It may be organic damage. It may be permanent. Time'll tell, and only after you are off Substance D for a long while.'

BloxVox Mutes Cellphone Convos
It's the polite thing to do, and has been the polite thing to do for about four generations.

Superfast Replicator: Volumetric Additive Manufacturing
I can't wait. Bring it on.

DNA May Contain Malware
'You were told to embed the logical pathogen.'

I Can't Resist Worm Robots
'Seen close it was not completely flexible...'

Rplate Digital License Plates Now Legal In Michigan
'Gragg's digital ink license plates ...'

Can Musk Starship Astronauts Use Magnetic Boots?
'Walking awkwardly in the magnetic boots that held him to the black mass of meteoric iron...'

Giant Dolphin Spotted On Jupiter!
'Now at last he could appreciate its real size and complexity...'

Musk's Starship An SF Fan's Dream Come True
Perfect for testing, perfect for fans!

TinyMobileRobots Are Sewer Sentinels
Every movie monster gets its start someplace.

Fishy Facial Recognition Now Possible
'Palenkis can identify random line patterns better than any other species in the universe.'

Spicy Tomatoes Created With Genetic Engineering
How about mashed potatoes and brown gravy?

Driverless Hotel Rooms Predicted In 1828
'Did you never see a moving house before?'

Yandex Self-Driving Taxi Is Very Smooth
'The big car was slowing down, its computer brain sensing an exit ahead.'

Shrimp Actually Made Of Algae Is A New Wave Food
Bring in that crop algae.

Cosplay Style Wings Could Work On Moon
'They're lovely! - titanalloy struts as light and strong as bird-bones...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.