Clarification: The Sunshade Option story

AP News
Posted: Apr 12, 2011 3:54 PM
Clarification: The Sunshade Option story

In an April 3 story reporting on a conference discussing geoengineering, The Associated Press said one of the techniques proposed to combat global warming, "brightening" certain ocean clouds with seawater particles to reflect more of the sun, would be limited in scale and unable to alter planet-wide warming.

That was based on, among other sources, an authoritative 2009 report by Britain's Royal Society, which said the technique would have "limited maximum effect and limited regional distribution," since appropriate clouds are present in only certain areas.

However, in defense of the method, John Latham of the U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research has since pointed to published studies in which computer modeling of the climate indicates extensive cloud brightening over parts of the oceans theoretically might lower the global temperature, when readings in cooling and warming regions are averaged out. Engineering and other technical issues and questions about adverse localized climate impacts remain to be resolved.