Monday, March 21, 2011

HAARP Data Says Japan Quake was Induced

THE UNITED STATES Air Force and Navy has provided a visual insight into what caused the 9.0 magnitude off of Japan on March 11, 2011 at 05:46:23 UTC. The image above was downloaded from the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP*) website. It is a time-frequency spectrogram, which shows the frequency content of signals recorded by the HAARP Induction Magnetometer. This instrument, provided by the University of Tokyo, measures temporal variations in the geomagnetic field (Earth’s magnetosphere) in the ULF (ultra-low frequency) range of 0-5 Hz. Notions have been added to the image to show you what was happening the day the Japan earthquake and tsunami struck.

By looking at the accompanying HAARP spectrum chart above you can see when the 9.0 magnitude earthquake struck – red line drawn vertically – and what was happening before and after the earthquake. What you can also see is a constant ULF frequency of 2.5 Hz being recorded by the magnetometer. The ULF 2.5 Hz frequency is evidence of an induced earthquake. The chart recorded this constant before, during and after the 9.0 magnitude earthquake struck.

On March 11, 2011 the 2.5 Hz ULF frequency was being emitted and recorded from 0:00 hours to about 10:00 hours – or for 10 hours. We know for a fact that the Japan earthquake lasted only a few minutes so why was the earthquake signature frequency (2.5 Hz) being recorded for 10 hours on the morning of March 11, 2011? Because a HAARP phased array antenna system was broadcasting (transmitting) the 2.5Hz ULF frequency and it triggered the Japan earthquake and ensuing tsunami.

“Researchers say they have found a close link between electrical disturbances on
the edge of our atmosphere and impending quakes on the ground below.”—BBC

If you go to HAARP’s official website you can see for yourself that the 2.5 Hz ULF frequency wasn’t only being broadcated for 10 hours, it was constantly being broadcasted for 2 days prior to the earthquake. Broadcasting began on March 8, 2011, just before midnight as you can see on HAARP’s website page. Click on the Next Day link to see that the earthquake inducing 2.5 Hz ULF frequency was being broadcasted for the entire days of March 9, 2011 and March 10, 2011. Even though the signature frequency of an earthquake was shown throughout March 9 and March 10 there were no constant earthquakes occurring off the east coast of Japan.

What is the significance of a 2.5 Hz ULF broadcast? The natural resonance of an earthquake is 2.5 Hz. Scientists working for the United States military discovered this using the phased array antennas at the HAARP facility in Alaska. HAARP’s own charts suggests that earthquakes occurred constantly for 3 days. We know for a fact that they haven’t.

The HAARP magnetometer data provides proof that the Japan earthquake was not a naturally occurring quake – it was triggered. This data shows us that a HAARP military installation was broadcasting the known earthquake signature frequency in order to trigger a major earthquake. The broadcast was most likely being transmitted from a floating HAARP system like the floating Sea-Based X-Band Radar platform that can be moved anywhere in the Pacific or Atlantic ocean under the protection of a carrier strike group—like the USS Ronald Reagan.

March 9th, 2011: The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group is in the western Pacific on its way to participate in the huge military exercise now under way in and around South Korea. Details on exactly what the carrier strike group will do as part of the Key Resolve/Foal Eagle exercise were not immediately available from U.S. Navy officials Wednesday.—Stars & Stripes

Evidence or Conspiracy theory?

Is this evidence or just a bunch of nonsense attached to a baseless conspiracy theory and recklessly made public by a crackpot? The above image is of the HAARP Sea-Based X-Band Radar (SBX) platform which does exist—not a conspiracy theory. The preceding link is to the United States Navy website. What is sitting on top of the deck of the SBX is a phased array antenna – a key component of the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) GMD system – clearly not a conspiracy theory.

The military vessel includes power plant, a bridge, control rooms, living quarters, storage areas and the infrastructure necessary to support the massive X-band radar. The SBX radar is the most sophisticated phased array, electro-mechanically steered X-band radar in the world – according to Boeing claims. The phased array antenna consists of thousands of antennas driven by transmit/receive modules. The radar is designed and built by Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems for Boeing, the prime contractor on the project for the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA). Boeing, Raytheon and MDA exists – also not a conspiracy theory.

HAARP does exists. The HAARP program is no secret. Their own website states that:

The HAARP program is committed to developing a world class ionospheric research facility consisting of: The Ionospheric Research Instrument (IRI), a high power transmitter facility operating in the High Frequency (HF) range. The IRI will be used to temporarily excite a limited area of the ionosphere for scientific study.

Even World renowned Stanford University knows about and publishes reports on the activities at the HAARP installations. According to Stanford:“The High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program HAARP) facility is located in Gakona, Alaska at 62.39º N, 145.15º W, near mile 11 of the Tok Cutoff Highway. The facility houses many diagnostic instruments for studying the ionosphere, but the highlight is the HF transmitter array. This array consists of 15×12 crossed dipole antennas, which together can transmit a total of 3600kW of RF power at frequencies from 2.8 – 10 MHz (HF, high frequency range). This power is partially absorbed by the ionosphere, and though only a tiny fraction of the power it naturally receives from the sun, can still produce subtle changes that can be detected with sensitive instruments.

“The VLF group focuses on using HAARP to generate ELF and VLF waves through a process called modulated heating. Such experiments have been conducted since 1999.”

Source: PressCorps

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

TEPCO releases photo of No.4 reactor

Tokyo Electric Power Company has released a photograph of the No.4 reactor building at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant where fires were reported on Tuesday and Wednesday.

It shows that a large portion of the building's outer wall has collapsed.

The company produced the photo at a news conference on Wednesday.

The photo, shot the day before from the northwestern side of the reactor, shows that a large portion of the building's outer wall has collapsed. There is an 8-meter hole on the 4th floor, and the interior is visible.

Another 8-meter square hole was also confirmed on the outer wall of the building. Both appeared after an explosion early on Tuesday.

An ensuing fire near the 4th floor reportedly later went out on its own.

Flames were also found spewing from the building early Wednesday, but the utility company said they were no longer visible half-an-hour later.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:57 +0900 (JST)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Is D.C. Prepared for a Tsunami?

After 9/11, our disaster preparedness is better -- but far from ideal.

By Marc Ambinder
Friday, March 11, 2011 | 11:50 a.m.

The administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Craig Fugate, was woken up early Friday morning by a watch officer from FEMA's National Response Coordination Center and given news about the massive earthquake and tsunami off the coast of Japan.

From FEMA's perspective, the action checklist here is relatively routine: provide support to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration's tsunami warning groups, activate the Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center in Virginia, and provide warnings to states and localities over the National Warning System, a 24/7 secure open line to emergency management centers across the country.

Fugate's aides also have a checklist of concerns for coastal areas: What's the likelihood that drinking water will be contaminated? Should FEMA's pre-positioned resources be deployed? Should FEMA initiate its liaison with major private corporations, like Target and Walmart, which are well-equipped to serve as distribution centers?

On Friday, Fugate also put an Urban Search and Rescue Team on stand-by, anticipating a request from Japan. Should President Obama make a formal request, FEMA will coordinate the emergency support functions of more than a dozen government agencies, which would probably report to the State Department's Agency for International Development.

By 8:00 a.m., before most of Washington got to work, Fugate had recorded a video for FEMA's website. He had tweeted important links.

All this, for a disaster a half a world away from the continental United States.

Earlier this week, I asked Fugate whether he was confident that the United States could absorb a catastrophic event that affected the National Capital Region -- specifically, in reference to the near-flood level of the Potomac this week. Are we doing what we need to do? Are we better prepared than we have been in the past?

"The answer is yes... but it's a qualified yes," he said. On the plus side, the Washington area has an unusually strong record of coordinated response in emergencies, and probably performs more exercises than any other region in the country. On 9/11, he said, as chaotic as the day was, the actual response was solid: the Fire Departments sharing resources, the National Guard being deployed efficiently, hospitals absorbing the wounded.

"In terms of a response, that's about as good as it can get. There were lessons learned, but the system didn't fail. Now you've got something more robust than you had [when an] Air Florida [plane crashed into the Potomac in 1982], and something much more robust than on 9/11. But that doesn't mean it isn't going to be any less catastrophic. The real question is, is the response more coordinated?"

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments holds dozens of exercises each year and hundreds of meetings. It has its own repository of disaster supplies at high-ground secure sites across the region, including three 18-wheelers with hundreds of interoperable radios. At an undisclosed location in Prince George's County, first responders from all jurisdictions practice evacuating Metro trains in the event of biological, chemical, and radiological attacks. The National Park Service Police and the D.C. Police Department practice evacuating downtown Washington once a year -- when people pack the mall for the 4th of July and then, when the fireworks are over, try to leave all at once. It's roughly the same number who crowd into downtown D.C. during work days.

There'd no doubt be problems getting to high ground. Many major Northern Virginia roads can be used for "counter-flow" -- that is, easily used for one-way traffic out. But Maryland's highways don't have gates or HOV lanes, which would make evacuation to the north harder.

Complicating a mass evacuation would be various emergency contingency plans put in place by the federal government. The good news: Most agencies have good, well-rehearsed plans. The bad news: They tend to run into conflict with one another.

According to an internal but unclassified "Federal Concept Plan," ahead of an exercise called FORWARD RESOLVE in 2010, "there was no established mechanism to coordinate and de‐conflict the planning assumptions and potential protective actions that federal authorities might implement following a catastrophic emergency."

This month, FEMA plans a "National Level Exercise" involving a major earthquake along the New Madrid fault line, which snakes through the Midwestern part of the country.

Now, after attending to potential damage in the homeland from the displaced water, FEMA will turn its attention to Japan's response. Did cellular networks prove resilient? Did the quake knock out back-up power systems? How vulnerable were Japan's nuclear reactors?

Fugate told me earlier this week that state and local responders would always be the tip of the spear for disasters like this one -- and that Americans should realistically prepare (without panicking) for a spell of time to survive without immediate government assistance.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Japan says partial meltdown likely at 2nd reactor

Japan's top government spokesman says a partial meltdown is likely under way at second reactor affected by Friday's massive earthquake.

The Associated Press


Japan's top government spokesman says a partial meltdown is likely under way at second reactor affected by Friday's massive earthquake.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said Sunday that radiation at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima briefly rose above legal limits, but it has since declined significantly.

Three reactors at the plant lost their cooling functions in the aftermath of quake and tsunami because of a power outage.

Some 170,000 people have been ordered to evacuate the area within 12 miles (20 kilometers) of the plant.

The plant is 170 miles (270 kilometers) north of Tokyo.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

IWAKI, Japan (AP) - Cooling systems failed at another nuclear reactor on Japan's devastated coast Sunday, hours after an explosion at a nearby unit made leaking radiation, or even outright meltdown, the central threat to the country following a catastrophic earthquake and tsunami.

The Japanese government said radiation emanating from the plant appeared to have decreased after Saturday's blast, which produced a cloud of white smoke that obscured the complex. But the danger was grave enough that officials pumped seawater into the reactor to avoid disaster and moved 170,000 people from the area.

Japan's nuclear safety agency then reported an emergency at another reactor unit, the third in the complex to have its cooling systems malfunction. To try to release pressure from the overheating reactor, authorities released steam that likely contained small amounts of radiation, the government said.

Japan dealt with the nuclear threat as it struggled to determine the scope of the earthquake, the most powerful in its recorded history, and the tsunami that ravaged its northeast Friday with breathtaking speed and power. The official count of the dead was 763, but the government said the figure could far exceed 1,000.

Teams searched for the missing along hundreds of miles (kilometers) of the Japanese coast, and thousands of hungry survivors huddled in darkened emergency centers that were cut off from rescuers and aid. At least a million households had gone without water since the quake struck. Large areas of the countryside were surrounded by water and unreachable. Some 2.5 million households were without electricity.

Powerful aftershocks continued to rock the country, including one Sunday with a magnitude of 6.2 that originated in the sea, about 111 miles (179 kilometers) east of Tokyo. It swayed buildings in the capital, but there were no reports of injuries or damage.

The explosion at the nuclear plant, Fukushima Dai-ichi, 170 miles (274 kilometers) northeast of Tokyo, appeared to be a consequence of steps taken to prevent a meltdown after the quake and tsunami knocked out power to the plant, crippling the system used to cool fuel rods there.

The blast destroyed the building housing the reactor, but not the reactor itself, which is enveloped by stainless steel 6 inches (15 centimeters) thick.

Inside that superheated steel vessel, water being poured over the fuel rods to cool them formed hydrogen. When officials released some of the hydrogen gas to relieve pressure inside the reactor, the hydrogen apparently reacted with oxygen, either in the air or the cooling water, and caused the explosion.

"They are working furiously to find a solution to cool the core," said Mark Hibbs, a senior associate at the Nuclear Policy Program for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Nuclear agency officials said Japan was injecting seawater into the core - an indication, Hibbs said, of "how serious the problem is and how the Japanese had to resort to unusual and improvised solutions to cool the reactor core."

Officials declined to say what the temperature was inside the troubled reactor, Unit 1. At 2,200 degrees Fahrenheit (1,200 degrees Celsius), the zirconium casings of the fuel rods can react with the cooling water and create hydrogen. At 4,000 Fahrenheit (2,200 Celsius), the uranium fuel pellets inside the rods start to melt, the beginning of a meltdown.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said radiation around the plant had fallen, not risen, after the blast but did not offer an explanation. Virtually any increase in dispersed radiation can raise the risk of cancer, and authorities were planning to distribute iodine, which helps protect against thyroid cancer. Authorities ordered 210,000 people out of the area within 12 miles (20 kilometers) of the reactor.

Among those waiting to leave was Reiko Takagi, a middle-aged woman standing outside a taxi company in Iwaki, about 19 miles (30 kilometers) from the nuclear plant.

"Everyone wants to get out of the town. But the roads are terrible," Takagi said. "It is too dangerous to go anywhere. But we are afraid that winds may change and bring radiation toward us."

It was the first time Japan had confronted the threat of a significant spread of radiation since the greatest nightmare in its history, a catastrophe exponentially worse: the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the United States, which resulted in more than 200,000 deaths from the explosions, fallout and radiation sickness.

Officials have said that radiation levels at Fukushima were elevated before the blast: At one point, the plant was releasing each hour the amount of radiation a person normally absorbs from the environment each year.

The Japanese utility that runs the plant said four workers suffered fractures and bruises and were being treated at a hospital. Nine residents of a town near the plant who later evacuated the area tested positive for radiation exposure, though officials said they showed no health problems.

Two days after the magnitude 8.9 quake, there were grim signs that the death toll could soar. One report said no one could find four whole trains. Others said 9,500 people in one coastal town were unaccounted for and that at least 200 bodies had washed ashore elsewhere.

The government said 642 people were missing and 1,426 injured.

Atsushi Ito, an official in Miyagi prefecture, among the worst-hit states, could not confirm the figures, noting that with so little access to the area, thousands of people in scores of towns could not yet be reached.

"Our estimates based on reported cases alone suggest that more than 1,000 people have lost their lives in the disaster," Edano said. "Unfortunately, the actual damage could far exceed that number considering the difficulty assessing the full extent of damage."

Japan, among the most technologically advanced countries in the world, is well-prepared for earthquakes. Its buildings are made to withstand strong jolts - even Friday's, the strongest in Japan since official records began in the late 1800s. The tsunami that followed was beyond human control.

With waves 23 feet (7 meters) high and the speed of a jumbo jet, it raced inland as far as six miles (10 kilometers), swallowing homes, cars, trees, people and anything else in its path.

"The tsunami was unbelievably fast," said Koichi Takairin, a 34-year-old truck driver who was inside his sturdy, four-ton rig when the wave hit the port town of Sendai. "Smaller cars were being swept around me. All I could do was sit in my truck."

His rig ruined, he joined the steady flow of survivors who walked along the road away from the sea and back into the city Saturday.

Smashed cars and small airplanes were jumbled against buildings near the local airport, several miles (kilometers) from the shore. Felled trees and wooden debris lay everywhere as rescue workers in boats nosed through murky waters and around flooded structures.

The tsunami set off warnings across the Pacific Ocean, and waves sent boats crashing into one another and demolished docks on the U.S. West Coast. In Crescent City, California, near the Oregon state line, one person was swept out to sea and had not been found Saturday.

In Japan early Sunday, firefighters had yet to contain a large blaze at the Cosmo Oil refinery in the city of Ichihara. Four million households remained without power. The Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported that Japan had asked for additional energy supplies from Russia.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan said 100,000 troops had joined the rescue and recovery efforts, helped by boats and helicopters. Dozens of countries offered to pitch in. President Barack Obama said one American aircraft carrier was already off Japan and a second on its way.

Two other U.S. rescue teams of 72 personnel each and rescue dogs were scheduled to arrive later Sunday, as was a five-dog team from Singapore.

Aid had just begun to trickle into many areas. More than 215,000 people were living in 1,350 temporary shelters in five prefectures, the Japanese national police agency said.

"All we have to eat are biscuits and rice balls," said Noboru Uehara, 24, a delivery truck driver who was wrapped in a blanket against the cold at a shelter in Iwake. "I'm worried that we will run out of food."

The transport ministry said all highways from Tokyo leading to quake-stricken areas were closed, except for emergency vehicles. Mobile communications were spotty and calls to the devastated areas were going unanswered.

Although the government played down fears of radiation leak, Japanese nuclear agency spokesman Shinji Kinjo acknowledged there were still fears of a meltdown - the collapse of a power plant's systems, rendering it unable regulate temperatures and keep the reactor fuel cool.

Yaroslov Shtrombakh, a Russian nuclear expert, said it was unlikely that the Japanese plant would suffer a meltdown like the one in 1986 at Chernobyl, when a reactor exploded and sent a cloud of radiation over much of Europe. That reactor, unlike the reactor at Fukushima, was not housed in a sealed container.

Kageyama reported from Tokyo. Associated Press writers Malcolm J. Foster, Mari Yamaguchi, Tomoko A. Hosaka and Shino Yuasa in Tokyo, Jay Alabaster in Sendai, Sylvia Hui in London, David Nowak in Moscow, and Margie Mason in Hanoi also contributed.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Can geoengineering put the freeze on global warming?

By Dan Vergano, USA TODAY

Updated 2/25/2011 9:38:04 AM

Scientists call it "geoengineering," but in plain speak, it means things like this: blasting tons of sulfate particles into the sky to reflect sunlight away from Earth; filling the ocean with iron filings to grow plankton that will suck up carbon; even dimming sunlight with space shades.

Each brings its own set of risks, but in a world fretting about the consequences of global warming, are these ideas whose time has come?

With 2010 tying as the world's warmest year on record and efforts to slow greenhouse gas emissions looking stymied, calls are rising for research into engineering our way out of global warming — everything from launching solar shade spacecraft to genetically engineering green deserts. An international consortium of 12 universities and research institutes on Tuesday, for example, announced plans to pioneer large-scale "ocean fertilization" experiments aimed at using the sea to pull more greenhouse gases out of the sky.

Once the domain of scientists' off-hours schemes scrawled on cocktail napkins, such geoengineering is getting a serious look in the political realm.

"We're moving into a different kind of world," says environmental economist Scott Barrett of Columbia University. "Better we turn to asking if 'geoengineering' could work, than waiting until it becomes a necessity."

A National Academy of Sciences' best estimate has global warming bumping up average temperatures by 3 to 7 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century. Meanwhile, greenhouse gas emissions that are largely responsible, most from burning the modern economy's main fuels, coal and oil, look set to continue to rise for the next quarter-century, according to Energy Information Agency estimates.

"That's where geoengineering comes in," says international relations expert David Victor of the University of California-San Diego. "Research into geoengineering creates another option for the public."

Geoengineering takes its cue from the natural experiment that actually had made the only dent in global warming's rise in the last two decades — the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, which blasted more than 15 million tons of sulfur dioxide 21 miles high, straight into the stratosphere. The stratosphere suspended those sulfur particles in the air worldwide, where the haze they created scattered and reflected sunlight away from the Earth and cooled global atmospheric temperatures nearly 0.7 to 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit in 1992 and 1993, before finally washing out, according to NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies estimates. Firing about half that much sulfur into the stratosphere every year for 30 years would help stabilize global warming's rise, National Center for Atmospheric Research climate scientist Tom Wigley estimated in a much-debated 2006 Science journal report.

Humanity would effectively become addicted to sky-borne sulfates to keep the cooling on track. The tradeoff is that rain and snow patterns would likely shift, a 2008 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study found, consigning hundreds of millions of the poorest people on the planet in Africa and Asia to recurring drought.
No longer eyed askance

"Geoengineering is no longer a taboo topic at scientific meetings. They are looking at it as one more policy prescription," says Science magazine reporter Eli Kintisch, author of Hack the Planet: Science's Best Hope — Or Worst Nightmare — For Averting Climate Catastrophe. "But it is yet to become a household word."

That may be changing, as the terms of debate about geoengineering become clear. On the pro-research side, this October the U.S. House Committee on Science and Technology called for more research into geoengineering, "to better understand which technologies or methods, if any, represent viable stopgap strategies for managing our changing climate and which pose unacceptable risks." On the more cautious side, a United Nations Environment Programme species conservation meeting in Nagoya, Japan, ended that same month with a call for, "no climate-related geoengineering activities," without environmental and scientific review.

What are the actual geoengineering proposals? Broadly, they come in two flavors: those that deal with greenhouse gases directly by soaking up carbon dioxide (the greenhouse gas with the biggest warming impact); and those that seek to limit the sunlight that warms those greenhouse gases. Here's a sampling, from the deep ocean to deep space:

Ocean fertilization. Dumping iron filings into the ocean to spur phytoplankton blooms is the saltwater version of forestation. The increased mass of the plankton's cells would swell with carbon pulled from the air. On the downside, it may kill fish, belch out other greenhouse gases such as methane, and hasn't worked very well in small trials.

Forestation. Intense planting of trees and reclaiming deserts with hardier plants is one of the ideas endorsed at the recent Cancun, Mexico, climate meeting, where representatives of 192 nations made some progress on an international climate agreement. More fantastic versions, endorsed by Princeton physicist Freeman Dyson, would rely on genetic engineering to produce trees that act as natural carbon scrubbers, their trunks swollen with carbon pulled from the air.

Cloud engineering. Painting rooftops white, genetically engineering crops to have shinier surfaces, and floating blocks of white Styrofoam in the oceans are all proposals to mimic the effects of clouds, whose white surfaces reflect sunlight. Pumping sea salt into the sky from thousands of "spray ships" could increase clouds themselves. Cost-effectiveness aside, such cloud-seeding might end up dumping rain on the ocean or already soggy regions, instead of where it's needed.

Pinatubo a-go-go. As mentioned above, sulfur aerosols could be fired into the sky by cannons, released by balloons or dropped from planes.

Space mirrors. Hundreds of thousands of thin reflective yard-long disks fired into a gravitational balance point between the sun and Earth could dim sunlight. Cost aside, rocket failures or collisions might lead to a tremendous orbital debris cloud circling the Earth. And a recent Geophysical Research Letters space tourism report suggests the rocket fuel burned to launch the needed number of shades would dump enough black soot — which absorbs sunlight and heats the atmosphere — to increase average global temperatures about 1.4 degrees.

"Most of the technologies are not yet proven and are at the theoretical or research phase," an August Congressional Research Service report noted.

On the environmental side, cutting temperature increases through these techniques may still shift rain and snow patterns, leaving the planet cooler, but it could also trigger droughts across vast swaths of farmland in Africa and India. Further, ocean fertilization could contribute to mass killing of sea life and releases of methane greenhouse gas, while using sulfur aerosols could bring not only drought but also enlarged ozone holes.

Leaving aside the environmental risks each one carries, the estimated costs tend to increase with how quickly each method removes carbon or deflects sunlight. The space reflectors would top the bill at a cost of several trillion dollars over 25 years.

"Geoengineering technologies, once developed, may enable short-sighted and unwise deployment, with potentially serious unforeseen consequences," said a 2009 American Meteorological Society statement. Turning over weather management to human beings raises, "legal, ethical, diplomatic, and even national security concerns," the statement added. Deflected storm tracks could result in floods such as the ones hitting Australia last month or Pakistan last year. And simply cutting temperatures won't stop the rise in ocean acidification arising from increased carbon dioxide levels in the air, which may affect marine life underlying the ocean food web.

Simply putting a worldwide price on carbon emissions from smokestacks and letting the marketplace lead to lower carbon emissions would likely be cheaper and more sensible than geoengineering, says Barrett, the economist. "But let's face it. We're talking about (geoengineering) because we don't have a price on carbon."

That's why geoengineering could happen before a global climate treaty ever passes the U.S. Senate, suggests Victor. International climate talks rest on getting 192 self-interested and short-sighted nations to cooperate in ways that will benefit some and cost others, particularly coal-powered ones such as the United States and China. But with geoengineering, you only need one nation to start "hacking," or geoengineering, the planet.

"It would be not at all surprising to wake up one morning and discover that Chinese testing (of geoengineering) has begun on a large scale," Victor says. "That would freak everyone out and create huge international tensions."

No international treaty governs geoengineering, other than a 2008 amendment to ocean pollution agreements limiting ocean fertilization to research studies.
Still a foreign concept to many

A Yale University survey of 1,001 people nationwide last year found that 1% could correctly describe geoengineering. The field needs to be researched, suggests climate scientist Michael MacCracken of the Climate Institute in Washington, D.C., before opinions harden without accurate information. Geoengineering at this point looks like one of many options in addressing climate change, MacCracken adds. "You can only geoengineer so much before the side effects become so much worse than the cure that it doesn't make sense to bother."

He and others argue geoengineering research should begin in earnest, before some abrupt climate change, such as Greenland's ice sheet melting precipitously, stampedes the world into an overreaction and rush to costly technology as a quick, untested fix.

"No research is really going on in a lot of these areas," he says, raising the prospect of a lot of fruitless or counterproductive climate engineering efforts suddenly sprouting in a global panic about collapsing ice sheets decades from now.

Global warming by itself is a kind of geoengineering, noted as far back as 1896 by the Swedish scientist Svante Arrhenius, who calculated that doubling the amount of carbon dioxide (the most noted greenhouse gas) in the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels would likely warm the atmosphere by 9 degrees. Arrhenius supposed that would take thousands of years to happen, based on fossil fuel use rates at the turn of the century. Instead, the global average temperature has warmed about 1.4 degrees since he made his estimate, as carbon dioxide levels have increased tremendously, and his 9-degree increase is now within the range of forecasts for 2100.

"I think it is settled that some climate engineering research will go forward," Kintisch says. "We haven't seen it enter the national debate yet. Hard to know what will happen when it does. That may be the biggest question."