A discussion on geoengineering in the anti-nuclear movement


I have just circulated a record of the recent discussion between A.M. and myself on the subject of geoengineering, removing names and personal references. I have done this because of the extraordinary importance of the subject and the need to build bridges between the anti-nuclear movement and political activists (as opposed to professional lobbyists) engaged with geoengineering, starting with the ONLY Green Party in the world seriously and honestly concerned at the leadership level with this subject in all its ramifications and without self-censorship. The Cyprus Greens have a long pre-history of anti-nuclear struggle.


Below is the comment of the parliamentarian of the Cyprus Greens, George Perdikis.


My translation:

"We received the interesting text from our colleague Wayne Hall on the relation between theories of geoengineering and climate change.


I remind you of the position of the ecologists: climate change is an existing danger to humanity. It already threatens the survival of the planet. But it is not to be confronted either through nuclear energy or through geoengineering.


There exist a host of non-polluting technologies and our first recommendation is for wise and restrained utilization of national resources.


With ecological greetings,

George Perdikis



Cyprus Green Party

169 Athalassas Avenue, Office 301

2024 Nicosia

P.O. Box: 29682, 1722 Nicosia

Tel.: 22518787 Fax: 22512710

Email: greenparty@cytanet.com.cy




Subject: A discussion on geoengineering in the anti-nuclear movement

A discussion on geoengineering in the anti-nuclear movement

1. Geoengineering is one of the most unpredictable, polluting and thus dangerous ways of trying to solve the Global Warming on a shoestring !


Bill Gates backs climate scientists lobbying for large-scale geoengineering

Other wealthy individuals have also funded a series of reports into the future use of technologies to geoengineer the climate

What is geo-engineering?
Scientists criticise handling of geoengineering pilot project

John Vidal, environment editor, The Guardian, Monday 6 February 2012


A small group of leading climate scientists, financially supported by billionaires including Bill Gates, are lobbying governments and international bodies to back experiments into manipulating the climate on a global scale to avoid catastrophic climate change.

The scientists, who advocate geoengineering methods such as spraying millions of tonnes of reflective particles of sulphur dioxide 30 miles above earth, argue that a "plan B" for climate change will be needed if the UN and politicians cannot agree to making the necessary cuts in greenhouse gases, and say the US government and others should pay for a major programme of international research.

Solar geoengineering techniques are highly controversial: while some climate scientists believe they may prove a quick and relatively cheap way to slow global warming, others fear that when conducted in the upper atmosphere, they could irrevocably alter rainfall patterns and interfere with the earth's climate.

Geoengineering is opposed by many environmentalists, who say the technology could undermine efforts to reduce emissions, and by developing countries who fear it could be used as a weapon or by rich countries to their advantage. In 2010, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity declared a moratorium on experiments in the sea and space, except for small-scale scientific studies.

Concern is now growing that the small but influential group of scientists, and their backers, may have a disproportionate effect on major decisions about geoengineering research and policy.

"We will need to protect ourselves from vested interests [and] be sure that choices are not influenced by parties who might make significant amounts of money through a choice to modify climate, especially using proprietary intellectual property," said Jane Long, director at large for the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in the US, in a paper delivered to a recent geoengineering conference on ethics.

"The stakes are very high and scientists are not the best people to deal with the social, ethical or political issues that geoengineering raises," said Doug Parr, chief scientist at Greenpeace. "The idea that a self-selected group should have so much influence is bizarre."

Pressure to find a quick technological fix to climate change is growing as politicians fail to reach an agreement to significantly reduce emissions. In 2009-2010, the US government received requests for over $2bn(£1.2bn) of grants for geoengineering research, but spent around $100m.

As well as Gates, other wealthy individuals including Sir Richard Branson, tar sands magnate Murray Edwards and the co-founder of Skype, Niklas Zennström, have funded a series of official reports into future use of the technology. Branson, who has frequently called for geoengineering to combat climate change, helped fund the Royal Society's inquiry into solar radiation management last year through his Carbon War Room charity. It is not known how much he contributed.

Professors David Keith, of Harvard University, and Ken Caldeira of Stanford, are the world's two leading advocates of major research into geoengineering the upper atmosphere to provide earth with a reflective shield. They have so far received over $4.6m from Gates to run the Fund for Innovative Climate and Energy Research (Ficer). Nearly half Ficer's money, which comes directly from Gates's personal funds, has so far been used for their own research, but the rest is disbursed by them to fund the work of other advocates of large-scale interventions.

According to statements of financial interests, Keith receives an undisclosed sum from Bill Gates each year, and is the president and majority owner of the geoengineering company Carbon Engineering, in which both Gates and Edwards have major stakes – believed to be together worth over $10m.

Another Edwards company, Canadian Natural Resources, has plans to spend $25bn to turn the bitumen-bearing sand found in northern Alberta into barrels of crude oil. Caldeira says he receives $375,000 a year from Gates, holds a carbon capture patent and works for Intellectual Ventures, a private geoegineering research company part-owned by Gates and run by Nathan Myhrvold, former head of technology at Microsoft.

According to the latest Ficer accounts, the two scientists have so far given $300,000 of Gates money to part-fund three prominent reviews and assessments of geoengineering – the UK Royal Society report on Solar Radiation Management, the US Taskforce on Geoengineering and a 2009 report by Novin a science thinktank based in Santa Barbara, California. Keith and Caldeira either sat on the panels that produced the reports or contributed evidence. All three reports strongly recommended more research into solar radiation management.

The fund also gave $600,000 to Phil Rasch, chief climate scientist for the Pacific Northwest national laboratory, one of 10 research institutions funded by the US energy department.

Rasch gave evidence at the first Royal Society report on geoengineering 2009 and was a panel member on the 2011 report. He has testified to the US Congress about the need for government funding of large-scale geoengineering and, according to a financial statement he gave the Royal Society, also works for Intellectual Ventures. In addition, Caldeira and Keith gave a further $240,000 to geoengineering advocates to travel and attend workshops and meetings and $100,000 to Jay Apt, a prominent advocate of geoengineering as a last resort, and professor of engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Apt worked with Keith and Aurora Flight Sciences, a US company that develops drone aircraft technology for the US military, to study the costs of sending 1m tonnes of sulphate particles into the upper atmosphere a year.

Analysis of the eight major national and international inquiries into geoengineering over the past three years shows that Keith and Caldeira, Rasch and Prof Granger Morgan the head of department of engineering and public policy at Carnegie Mellon University where Keith works, have sat on seven panels, including one set up by the UN. Three other strong advocates of solar radiation geoengineering, including Rasch, have sat on national inquiries part-funded by Ficer.

"There are clear conflicts of interest between many of the people involved in the debate," said Diana Bronson, a researcher with Montreal-based geoengineering watchdog ETC.

"What is really worrying is that the same small group working on high-risk technologies that will geoengineer the planet is also trying to engineer the discussion around international rules and regulations. We cannot put the fox in charge of the chicken coop."

"The eco-clique are lobbying for a huge injection of public funds into geoengineering research. They dominate virtually every inquiry into geoengineering. They are present in almost all of the expert deliberations. They have been the leading advisers to parliamentary and congressional inquiries and their views will, in all likelihood, dominate the deliberations of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as it grapples for the first time with the scientific and ethical tangle that is climate engineering," said Clive Hamilton, professor of Public Ethics at the Australian National University, in a Guardian blog.

The scientists involved reject this notion. "Even the perception that [a small group of people has] illegitimate influence [is] very unhealthy for a technology which has extreme power over the world. The concerns that a small group [is] dominating the debate are legitimate, but things are not as they were," said Keith. "It's changing as countries like India and China become involved. The era when my voice or that of a few was dominant is over. We need a very broad debate."

"Every scientist has some conflict of interest, because we would all like to see more resources going to study things that we find interesting," said Caldeira. "Do I have too much influence? I feel like I have too little. I have been calling for making CO2 emissions illegal for many years, but no one is listening to me. People who disagree with me might feel I have too much influence. The best way to reduce my influence is to have more public research funds available, so that our funds are in the noise. If the federal government played the role it should in this area, there would be no need for money from Gates.

"Regarding my own patents, I have repeatedly stated that if any patent that I am on is ever used for the purposes of altering climate, then any proceeds that accrue to me for this use will be donated to nonprofit NGOs and charities. I have no expectation or interest in developing a personal revenue stream based upon the use of these patents for climate modification.".

Rasch added: "I don't feel there is any conflict of interest. I don't lobby, work with patents or intellectual property, do classified research or work with for-profit companies. The research I do on geoengineering involves computer simulations and thinking about possible consequences. The Ficer foundation that has funded my research tries to be transparent in their activities, as do I."

2. W.H.


Open Letter to “Hands off Mother Earth

from the Greek Movement against Chemical Aerial Spraying

Volos, Greece

Dear Hands off Mother Earth,

Our organization wishes to express its support for your rejection of atmospheric geoengineering and your campaign against it, including the moratorium recommendation to be submitted in October to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.

We note that the Capodistrias-Spinelli-Europe initiative and the Belfort group, with whom we have a relationship of collaboration, have been included in the list of supporting organizations and we would like similar recognition to be given to the support we offer.

Our opposition to atmospheric geoengineering broadly coincides with the opposition expressed at the May 2010 Belfort group symposium in Ghent, Belgium on “the illegal spraying of harmful substances in the atmosphere by airplanes”, as registered in the “Case Orange” report commissioned by the organizers of that symposium and reviewed at the symposium by the scientist Coen Vermeeren.

(For Dr. Vermeeren’s review of the report see http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/7299427 , starting at minute 35.)

The conclusions of the Case Orange report are significantly different from those of Hands off Mother Earth, particularly in relation to recognition of atmospheric geoengineering not as a proposal or a practice at most in a preliminary experimental stage but rather as a well-entrenched, and systematically denied, planetary reality.

We would like to invite you to explain the factors, political and/or legal, that prevent you from reaching the same conclusions as the Case Orange report in this respect. It is quite possible to do this without modifying or altering your public stance.

We would like to emphasize that we do NOT wish to conduct a “scientific” debate with you. Our fear is that such a debate could resemble the street debate conducted in San Diego in February 2010 between scientist Alan Robock, known as a “critic” of geoengineering, and activists.

This debate was degrading for both parties, exposing the activists as naïve and Dr. Robock as an insincere politician, not a scientist researching and describing reality.

We would appreciate a written reply to this message. We propose at some future date, when we are in a position to conduct a symposium ourselves, to invite you to it so that a similar discussion may be conducted there also, hopefully with more public involvement and participation.

In the meantime, please continue, with our support, your campaign in the international organizations and keep us informed of your progress.


Members of the Committee

Nikos Katsaros (chemist),

Wayne Hall (translator)

Aliki Stefanou (journalist)

Freideriki Zougrou (economist)

Georgios Karayannis (attorney)

Other supporters (click)

Response to Open Letter from Diana Bronson (click)

Rosalie Bertell response to Diana Bronson (click)

Correspondence with Rosalie Bertell and other activists


3.   A.M.

For those of you that want to point that this article is old, I am aware of that fact.

More (recent) articles on geoengeneering and the discussion about it can be found in the Guardian on-line at:

Geoengineering techniques need more study, says science coalition

The Solar Radiation Management Governance Initiative says geoengineering could be 'plan B' for climate change

Hanna Gersmann, guardian.co.uk, Thursday 1 December 2011


More research on the risks and governance of geoengineering the planet's climate by reflecting sunlight into space is needed, a grouping of science bodies and a green NGO have said, as the end of the first week of UN climate talks nears.

Concern about such techniques is significant and so more dialogue and research is needed on the risks and benefits, said the Solar Radiation Management Governance Initiative, a coalition formed in March 2010 of the Royal Society, Italian-based academy of science for the developing world Twas, and US non-profit, the Environmental Defence Fund.

Various techniques for combating global warming by reducing the amount of the sun's energy reaching the earth have been proposed, from huge space reflectors in orbit to stratospheric aerosols released in the upper atmosphere. A UK-backed plan to test the mechanics of inserting such aerosols, using a hosepipe attached to a giant balloon, was postponed in September and the so-called Spice project was criticised by scientists writing in Nature earlier this month.

Steven Hamburg, the chief scientist for the Environmental Defence Fund and co-chair of the SRMGI, said: "Solar radiation management might sound, at first, like something from science fiction – but it's not. There are already serious discussions beginning about it, and that's why we felt it was urgent to create this governance initiative. Solar radiation management could be a Plan B to address climate change, but first we must figure out how to research it safely. Only then should we even consider any other steps."

The SRMGI's co-chair, John Shepherd, said: "Unless the apparent lack of political will to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions changes soon, geoengineering may be needed and SRM methods could be used in unregulated and possibly reckless ways by individuals, corporations or individual countries. "

He added: "We must also work outside our national borders, bringing together interested parties from around the globe to debate the issues of geo-engineering, agree appropriate governance structures and ensure that any research is undertaken in a safe, transparent and socially acceptable manner. The question of whether solar geo-engineering will prove to be helpful or harmful will largely depend on how humanity can govern the issue and its political implications, and avoid unilateral action."

But Silvia Ribeiro, the Latin American director of the ETC Group, which campaigns against geoengineering, said: "This report is dominated by scientists engaged in geoengineering research in the UK, US and Canada. They are advocates for more research, several of them have claimed patents and have significant financial, institutional and professional interests in the field of geoengineering research. There are the same familiar names that we have seen in a whole series of recent reports: John Shepherd or David Keith."

In September, Shepherd wrote in the Guardian that research would be "sadly necessary". In October, David Keith of Harvard University, a member of the SRMGI working group, and founder and president of Carbon Engineering, a geo-engineering company with 10 employees funded with around $6m (£3.8m) by Bill Gates, wrote a study that said the public strongly reported research into solar geoengineering. Some 72% of the 3,105 participants in the UK, US and Canada said they somewhat or strongly supported general research when asked: "Do you think scientists should study solar radiation management?"

Ribeiro went on: "Solar radiation management technologies are high-risk and extremely dangerous and they should be treated under international law like nuclear weapons – except, unlike nuclear weapons, we have an opportunity to ban their testing and their proliferation them before the technology is fully developed, rather than trying to prevent their proliferation after the fact. This is where we should be looking to for guidance on governance. We need to ban these technologies, not facilitate their development."

The SRMGI said a ban on geoengineering would not work: "A moratorium on all SRM-related research would be difficult if not impossible to enforce. The range of SRM research runs from computer simulations and laboratory studies right up to potentially risky, large-scale experiments in the real world. While most SRMGI participants were comfortable with low risk research, there was much debate over how to govern any research outside the lab," said the coalition's report, published on Thursday.

5. W.H.

From Long Island Skywatch

Message flagged Wednesday, February 8, 2012 2:07 PM

Hello everybody,

Our first official meeting is scheduled for Saturday, February 25th at 6:00pm. If you plan on attending, please send an email to
LongIslandSkywatch@yahoo.com. You will then be given the address of the meeting. A small donation will be required to "hold" the room. If you have taken tests, please attach the rain, water, tree or blood tests with your response. It is imperative that we show the toxic results of geoengineering. Without a substantial amount of tests, we will not be able to convince our legislators that geoengineering is altering our bodies and planet. We tested air this week and will have results soon. Labs and doctors are listed below where your samples can be taken. Blood tests and trees are preferred as the trees around Long Island are exhibiting signs of dieoff. Please test for aluminum, barium and strontium if possible. Quest in Seldon tests for blood barium and LabCorp performs these tests also.

Michael Murphy is organizing a coalition to have localities meet with their legislators. This strategy is starting to show fruition all over the country: Maui, Suffolk, Wisconsin and Fairfax, Ca, just to name a few. All the steps that we took can be accessed on longislandskywatch.com front page and humanitytranscending.com. We are asking everyone to please utilize this information and make appointments with their legislators as they are not aware of geoengineering/chemtrails. Ours were not and thanked us for informing them. We are now researching the EPA and NYDEC to plan our future strategies. NYC and LongIsland are in "nonattainment" which means that our air cannot pass requirements for particle pollution. Also, the EPA and NYDEC do not specifically monitor for aluminum, barium, and strontium. Nor, do they have the capability to monitor for nanoscale which is what David Keith (head geoengineer) is proposing. Those steps and documentation will be included soon...We thank everyone for everything they do and we look forward to seeing a big turnout at the meeting to go forward...

AAEM certified physician to test blood:
Dr. Jesse Stoff at 976 Roanoke Avenue, Riverhead, NY, 631-806-9164
To test air:
Long Island Analytical:
To test water and soil:
EcoTest Laboratories, Inc. 377 Sheffield Avenue, North Babylon, NY, 631-422-5777 or H2M Labs at 575 Broad Hollow, Melville, NY, 631-694-3040


6. A.M.

I send this article on the Acid Rain Facts because it could be one of the undesirable effects of geoeneering, if the cooling effect is gained by bringing particles in the upper atmosphere.

We have been fighting Acid rain before and now there is a risk of reintroducing Acid Rain with the use of geoeneering. What is a bad thing !

Acid Rain

Effects Felt Through the Food Chain

This article about Acid Rain can be found at the site of National Geographic at:


Acid rain describes any form of precipitation with high levels of nitric and sulfuric acids. It can also occur in the form of snow, fog, and tiny bits of dry material that settle to Earth.

Rotting vegetation and erupting volcanoes release some chemicals that can cause acid rain, but most acid rain falls because of human activities. The biggest culprit is the burning of fossil fuels by coal-burning power plants, factories, and automobiles.

When humans burn fossil fuels, sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) are released into the atmosphere. These chemical gases react with water, oxygen, and other substances to form mild solutions of sulfuric and nitric acid. Winds may spread these acidic solutions across the atmosphere and over hundreds of miles. When acid rain reaches Earth, it flows across the surface in runoff water, enters water systems, and sinks into the soil.

Acid rain has many ecological effects, but none is greater than its impact on lakes, streams, wetlands, and other aquatic environments. Acid rain makes waters acidic and causes them to absorb the aluminum that makes its way from soil into lakes and streams. This combination makes waters toxic to crayfish, clams, fish, and other aquatic animals.

Some species can tolerate acidic waters better than others. However, in an interconnected ecosystem, what impacts some species eventually impacts many more throughout the food chain—including non-aquatic species such as birds.

Acid rain also damages forests, especially those at higher elevations. It robs the soil of essential nutrients and releases aluminum in the soil, which makes it hard for trees to take up water. Trees' leaves and needles are also harmed by acids.

The effects of acid rain, combined with other environmental stressors, leave trees and plants less able to withstand cold temperatures, insects, and disease. The pollutants may also inhibit trees' ability to reproduce. Some soils are better able to neutralize acids than others. In areas where the soil's "buffering capacity" is low, the harmful effects of acid rain are much greater.

The only way to fight acid rain is by curbing the release of the pollutants that cause it. This means burning fewer fossil fuels. Many governments have tried to curb emissions by cleaning up industry smokestacks and promoting alternative fuel sources. These efforts have met with mixed results. But even if acid rain could be stopped today, it would still take many years for its harmful effects to disappear.

Individuals can also help prevent acid rain by conserving energy. The less electricity people use in their homes, the fewer chemicals power plants will emit. Vehicles are also major fossil fuel users, so drivers can reduce emissions by using public transportation, carpooling, biking, or simply walking wherever possible.


7. W.H.


Article history

Few in the civil sector fully understand that geoengineering is primarily a military science and has nothing to do with either cooling the planet or lowering carbon emissions (Report, 6 February). While seemingly fantastical, weather has been weaponised. At least four countries – the US, Russia, China and Israel – possess the technology and organisation to regularly alter weather and geologic events for various military and black operations, which are tied to secondary objectives, including demographic, energy and agricultural resource management.

Indeed, warfare now includes the technological ability to induce, enhance or direct cyclonic events, earthquakes, draught and flooding, including the use of polymerised aerosol viral agents and radioactive particulates carried through global weather systems. Various themes in public debate, including global warming, have unfortunately been subsumed into much larger military and commercial objectives that have nothing to do with broad public environmental concerns. These include the gradual warming of polar regions to facilitate naval navigation and resource extraction.
Matt Andersson
Former executive adviser, aerospace & defence, Booz Allen Hamilton, Chicago

More on this


(in English, it is from Serbia, which explains the subtitles)

8. A.M.

All scientists know that sooner or later what they have
found to be of use for mankind to know, understand or for the
general benefit of us all will get some military angle or program
or misuse by the military or a fascistoide State.

This is part of the history of mankind since he learned to make
tools to hunt, to kill.

But fortunately not all scientists are working for the military industrial
complex of the US so there is still hope for mankind as a whole.

But Global Warming does exist and so do civil programs of
geoengeneering who want to put an end to it, so the poles keep
their ice.

9. W.H.

Even people like the ETC Group, who pretend that "solar radiation management" (and whatever black programmes are hiding behind it) are not already a well-entrenched global reality (it seems conformity to this fiction is a prerequisite for acceptance to debate in the international organizations) do NOT support geoengineering, and are in fact adamantly opposed to it. Just take a look at Pat Mooney


Some "conspiracy theorist" activists against chemtrails/geoengineering/HAARP are climate change sceptics but this does not mean that there is a "respectable" route into the geoengineering debate via opposition to climate change scepticism. Even if it is the most familiar element of the debate for anti-nuclear activists.



There is no point in anti-nuclear activists getting into the geoengineering debate if the only effect is to make it more like the anti-nuclear debate, i.e. ineffectual.

It is a misunderstanding of the position of people like Mooney and his ETC Group to imagine that they are in any way tolerant of the ideology of the "geoengineers", including the professed concern for climate change.


10. A.M.

I am against geoengeneering, but one day it might be our only option
left, if we do not kick our bad habits.

The best way to avoid the necessity of geoengeneering is of course to
stop polluting our atmosphere.

But since our World citizens as a whole, apart from a few exceptions
are neither interested to leave there car at home nor to become
vegetarian eating only locally produced food, it might well come out
that plan B will be in the moment of last resort, our only option.

If so the scientist better _then_ have learned do it right - that is with
a minimum effect in the form of pollution or toxicity, undesirable
weather alterations and the maximum effect to cool the planet.

11. W.H.

A person who is against geoengineering at minimum does not make more concessions to the logic of the power elite than does a Pat Mooney.

A.M.'s "opposition" to geoengineering is identical to that of the geoengineering "internal oppositionist " Alan Robock.

Here is Robock in interaction with "conspiracy theorist" chemtrails activists in San Diego, in a degrading dialogue exposing Robock's dishonesty on the one side, the activists' naivety on the other.


Here is another similar confrontation, between a similarly "dissident" geoengineer Ken Caldeira (a whole "internal opposition" of geoengineers profess the views that A.M.has just restated)


and Democratic Congressional Candidate John Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald is rather more effectual than the San Diego activists. His is, more or less, the model to follow.


Note this discussion at the Hellenic American Democratic Association forum in Athens, Greece:


My comment:

"As far as I am concerned, Caldeira should be shunned and boycotted, not argued with, by any citizen in his/her right mind. Anyone wanting to argue with "the other side" about geoengineering should argue not with the Caldeiras and Keiths and Robocks but with the ETC group, who possess the requisite expertise and are at least plausibly genuine in their opposition to current forms of geoengineering, (whether or not they acknowledge its non-hypothetical character - they do not). There should be no role for people like Caldeira in science or in public life. He has neither the integrity that should characterize science nor the accountability that should characterize politics.

Of course it is different if Caldeira, and the "people" who employ him, are confronted by someone in a position of power, or shall we say "influence". If John Fitzgerald succeeds in getting into Congress, more power to him to continue his confrontations with Caldeira and company."

Home page