Ethan Zuckerman: So, when take on issues of the scale of hack­ing the entire plan­et, we need a rather extra­or­di­nary mod­er­a­tor to take us through the con­ver­sa­tion. We are lucky to have just such an extra­or­di­nary mod­er­a­tor. We have Stewart Brand, who is a fan of tak­ing on prob­lems of the whole earth, as one of the founders of the Whole Earth Catalogue, and a man who favors the long view with his work on the the Long Now Foundation. So, Stewart.

Stewart Brand: To segue between the pre­vi­ous pan­el and this one, the things that make peo­ple feel that some of this stuff should be for­bid­den or slowed or encour­ages sus­pi­cions, with the biotech stuff, my fel­low environmentalists—I’m an ex-environmentalist at this point because of how far they’ve gone with what they call the the pre­cau­tion­ary prin­ci­ple. And the pre­cau­tion­ary prin­ci­ple was invoked to the point where if any­body can imag­ine any­thing that can go wrong with some­thing that’s sort of new, just don’t do it. Which means that by the way not only don’t do it, don’t do research about, don’t talk about it, because ter­ri­ble things might hap­pen that would be irre­versible.

Ryan [Phelan] men­tioned the more recently-applied argu­ment which is called moral haz­ard”. Moral haz­ard has the pret­ty for­mal def­i­n­i­tion lack of incen­tive to guard again­st risk where one is pro­tect­ed from its con­se­quences.” The idea here being that if you talk about, research, or even think about apply­ing geo­engi­neer­ing to cli­mate change issues, you would be treat­ing the symp­toms of cli­mate change, as one pub­li­ca­tion said, and there­by giv­ing peo­ple per­mis­sion to ignore the caus­es. One cli­mate sci­en­tist in Germany said oh, It’s like a junkie fig­ur­ing out new ways to steal from his chil­dren.” And a very good book on all of this—there’s been now three books on geoengineering—a very good one is Oliver Morton’s The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World.

A few years ago, when I was prepar­ing this book Whole Earth Discipline: Why Dense Cities, Nuclear Power, Transgenic Crops, Restored Wildlands, and Geoengineering Are Necessary, I asked Al Gore about geo­engi­neer­ing. And he says, Oh! Right, Stewart, let’s just exper­i­ment with the whole plan­et.” He has zero use so far for geo­engi­neer­ing. That may change. He she used to say the same about nuclear, but he’s come a lit­tle way toward nuclear on that.

Our two pan­elists (which should prob­a­bly come up here at this point), David Keith and Gernot Wagner are the real sub­stance of this and will be sure to be get­ting lots of dis­cus­sion with you guys. David Keith will begin and what I think that David Keith has done that is unique is besides being a cli­mate sci­en­tists here at Harvard focus­ing on the­se mat­ters, he’s looked for what is a way to be real­ly incre­men­tal, prag­mat­ic, reversible, and less over­whelm­ing­ly scary. Because the way that geo­engi­neer­ing is often put is it’s a Damocles sword. We’ll do the whole plan­et and then we’re absolute­ly addict­ed to doing that forever. And mean­while we’ll keep on burn­ing all the coal that’s in the ground.

David’s got a bet­ter approach on that. Go ahead.

David Keith: Thank you. Solar geo­engi­neer­ing rests on a sim­ple idea that it is tech­ni­cal­ly pos­si­ble to make the Earth a lit­tle more reflec­tive so that it absorbs a lit­tle less sun­light, which would part­ly coun­ter­act some of the risks that come from accu­mu­lat­ing car­bon diox­ide in the atmos­phere. When I say tech­ni­cal­ly pos­si­ble, it appears that at least doing this in a crude way is actu­al­ly easy, in the sense that it could be done with com­mer­cial off-the-shelf tech­nolo­gies now, and it could be done at a cost that is real­ly triv­ial, sort of a part in a thou­sand or a part in ten thou­sand of glob­al GDP.

More sur­pris­ing­ly, there is real evi­dence that it could reduce many of the risks that peo­ple care about most. So, it’s almost axiomat­ic. It’s a fact of ener­gy con­ser­va­tion, more or less, that if you warmed up the plan­et by adding car­bon out­side, you could bring the glob­al aver­age sur­face tem­per­a­ture back to some­thing like say, pre-industrial, if that was our choice. That could be done for sure. And that’s not been real­ly doubt­ed. Reports back to the 1960s have talked about solar geo­engi­neer­ing and made it clear that that was pos­si­ble.

What hasn’t been clear is the extent that it would deal with risks we care about. Extreme events like the big destruc­tive storms that cause some of the most dam­age, heat waves, ris­ing sea lev­els. And while we cer­tain­ly don’t know very well how well it would work; while there are lots of risks that are unex­plored part­ly because we have in a sense col­lec­tive­ly decid­ed we prefer ignorance—we have no real research pro­grams; nev­er­the­less in the last espe­cial­ly five years, this has been tack­led by the state of the art cli­mate mod­els, by basic the­o­ry, by obser­va­tion­al ana­logues. And there’s now a lot of evi­dence that solar geo­engi­neer­ing could on a region-by-region basis, if used appro­pri­ate­ly, reduce many of the­se risks. Reduce intense storms, reduce peak tem­per­a­tures, increase the pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of crops world­wide.

The big ques­tion is how we might con­trol it, how we might learn more about it. Now, I’m sure many of you are think­ing why wouldn’t we just stop emit­ting car­bon diox­ide? So. Suppose we did. Suppose that tomor­row, we stopped. No cars, no air­planes, no pow­er plants. Forget for a sec­ond the con­se­quences of that for our civ­i­liza­tion. Just sup­pose we did it. Would it get warmer, or would it get cold­er? That’s a test. Think about it for a sec­ond. I’m not going to ask for a show of hands. But what hap­pens like, in the next few months or years?

It gets warmer. And the rea­son it gets warmer is that we are putting a lot of aerosols into the atmos­phere now, not the car­bon diox­ide which in the long run is of course warm­ing the plan­et, but we are putting aerosol pol­lu­tion in the atmos­phere now. Which kills three or six or so mil­lion peo­ple a year now. You know, it cuts sev­er­al years off your life if you hap­pen to be unfor­tu­nate enough to live in Beijing. But even here you know, I live a lit­tle less long because I moved here from Western Canada than I would have had I stayed there. 

Those aerosols are cool­ing the plan­et. Now, they’re off­set­ting part of the warm­ing ten­den­cy that’s there from the car­bon diox­ide; mask­ing it. So if we just stopped now, it would get warmer, and it might get warmer for more than a cen­tu­ry. We don’t know how much cli­mate feed­back there is. We don’t know how much the warm­ing would trig­ger more car­bon diox­ide emis­sions over the cen­tu­ry.

Solar geo­engi­neer­ing pro­vides a thing that is dif­fer­ent, that is com­ple­men­tary, to emis­sions reduc­tions. In the long run, if we want a sta­ble cli­mate we must bring emis­sions to zero. Solar geo­engi­neer­ing doesn’t get us out of the need to bring emis­sions to zero, but it does a dif­fer­ent thing. It par­tial­ly, imper­fect­ly, deals with the risks of the CO2 we have admit­ted in his­to­ry. So unless you’ve got a time machine as an alter­na­tive, you need a way to deal with those emis­sions. And geo­engi­neer­ing is a way to do that. And so in that sense it is a com­pli­ment to cut­ting emis­sions. The two things can work togeth­er to provide much more abil­i­ty to reduce cli­mate risks than can be done with cut­ting emis­sions alone.

So there cer­tain­ly are aspects of this that raise the­se ques­tions about future behav­ior. And ques­tions about whether we should tie our hands some­how to the mast with respect to future behav­ior. And there are ques­tions about mess­ing with nature.

Now, I want to end there. How should we think about whether this is some­how an out­ra­geous manip­u­la­tion of the nat­u­ral world? There’s no sim­ple answers, but let me just pose a ques­tion. Because you can look at this as some­how increas­ing the weight of human action on nature, the way we’re push­ing the nat­u­ral world, or decreas­ing it. So the case for increas­ing it is that obvi­ous­ly some glob­al extra sys­tem we’ve added to try and delib­er­ate­ly con­trol the plan­et is adding some­how to the com­plex­i­ty of the sys­tem, the com­plex­i­ty of the inter­ac­tions between humans and their envi­ron­ment, and in some ways makes the whole world more of an arti­fact.

But it’s also true that one of the most basic mea­sures of how much we are mess­ing with the cli­mate is what we in the cli­mate sci­ence world call the radia­tive forc­ing, the mea­sure of the kind of total force by which our accu­mu­lat­ed green­house gas­es and the oth­er things we’ve done to the cli­mate are chang­ing it. 

And the fact is for any given amount of CO2 in the atmos­phere, in say 2050, that atmos­phere with also a lit­tle bit of solar geo­engi­neer­ing has less radia­tive forc­ing. And so in some basic mea­sure, we’re actu­al­ly doing less to alter the cli­mate than we would have done if we hadn’t done solar geo­engi­neer­ing.

And I think that real­ly is the core ques­tion about how to think about the trade­off between how we mess with nature. There’s no way that we can avoid the fact we are doing it. The ques­tion is whether we do it delib­er­ate­ly, with inten­tion, in a way that is demo­c­ra­t­ic and open.

Brand: David, would you intro­duce your col­league Gernot?

Keith: I’d love to. Gernot Wagner has joined our effort at Harvard to build a real­ly sig­nif­i­cant geo­engi­neer­ing research pro­gram that would be cov­er­ing things from sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy right through to pub­lic pol­i­cy. He spent six or eight years ris­ing as one of the young stars in envi­ron­men­tal defense, and has come here to help build a new pro­gram with what we hope will be glob­al reach. And [inaudi­ble] say, he’s an econ­o­mist.

Gernot Wagner:am an econ­o­mist—

Keith: You can still lis­ten to him.

Wagner: Thanks David and Stewart. So, sci­ence is one thing, and it’s amaz­ing. Now, so often of course, this is going to stand or fall not just by virtue of the sci­ence but of the social sci­ence. Social con­text, gov­er­nance, every­thing around it. And as an envi­ron­men­tal­ist who car­ries around the reusable water bot­tle (I would nev­er touch the oth­er one here)— Full dis­clo­sure, I’m a veg­e­tar­i­an, all the rest of that. But of course first of all, none of that makes a dif­fer­ence. Of course we know that. And we do know that we must cut emis­sions. Yes, we do, right?

But then there is this thing out they are called moral haz­ard. What if think­ing, talk­ing, about solar geo­engi­neer­ing gives us license to pol­lute? That would be bad. Now, for­get about cli­mate for a moment. Think about statins. Lipitor. If you’re a man of a cer­tain age, cer­tain girth, you’re sup­posed to pop a pill of Lipitor every­day. Now, here’s the prob­lem. If you’re a physi­cian, and you have some­one walk into your office with high cho­les­terol, you know that per­son needs to diet and exer­cise. That’s a given. Chance is pret­ty good he hasn’t been diet­ing or exer­cis­ing, oth­er­wise he wouldn’t be there. So, what does the intro­duc­tion of that pill do to that per­son?

Well, one sto­ry is, ratio­nal­ly ([points at self] homo eco­nom­i­cus; econ­o­mist) ratio­nal­ly we should all be exer­cis­ing let’s say thir­ty min­utes a day. Now you get the pill. Rationally, now you should be exer­cis­ing twenty-nine and a half min­utes a day. Turns out no one is actu­al­ly all that ratio­nal, right? So, people—you know, the nut cas­es, that exer­cise nine­ty min­utes a day. [waits for show of hands] Or zero, plus/minus ten min­utes. [waits for show of hands]

So, the ones who do nine­ty, pre­sum­ably you’ll keep exer­cis­ing. It floats your boat. Maybe lit­er­al­ly if you’re sail­ing out there for exer­cise. The ones who do zero, well, if you tell them now about Lipitor, one reac­tion is moral haz­ard. Which is to say right, I was exer­cis­ing zero plus/minus ten, now I’m doing even less. I’m eat­ing the dough­nut and the bacon and what­ev­er else,” right. Another reac­tion is to say, Holy shit, I need to take a pill to stay alive? Maybe I should be tak­ing the stairs more often. 

Back to cli­mate. Very ear­ly evidence—I’ve now been with David for six months—so very very ear­ly evi­dence on this, and actu­al­ly not from us. Someone else who just pub­lished a study mon­th or so ago. When you tell peo­ple about solar geo­engi­neer­ing, are they more or less like­ly now to vote for what is actu­al­ly nec­es­sary to cut emis­sions? Carbon tax, price on car­bon. If it’s moral haz­ard, less like­ly. If it’s anti”-moral haz­ard, more like­ly. Turns out what hap­pens to dom­i­nate is the, Holy shit. Serious peo­ple are talk­ing about what? Maybe there’s some­thing to this cli­mate prob­lem after all.” 

Thank you.

Brand: So let me you ask you guys about sort of the cur­rent state of play. When I did this book back in 2009. Ken Caldeira said there’s been no pub­lic fund­ing for this at all. Everybody’s doing it kind of as a hob­by on their own time in their own back­yard, and that was that. And ear­lier than that, I remem­ber Jesse Ausubel came out with the a paper around 2000 talk­ing about adap­ta­tion. And he was pun­ished severe­ly for talk­ing about adap­ta­tion when every­body knows what you’ve got to do is elim­i­nate the­se green­house gas­es, and if you even talk about adap­ta­tion that peo­ple will relax and that’s ter­ri­ble. And he got a pro­fes­sion­al hit, just for say­ing out loud that you could think about that, and do that, and do research on it.

But here we are, 2016. We’re over what, 450 parts per mil­lion. It’s mov­ing right along. Are we mov­ing right along? Is there mon­ey for research­ing geo­engi­neer­ing now?

Keith: It is stun­ning. In a nation that [has] in many ways led the world in open sci­en­tific research, we have real­ly noth­ing in the way of orga­nized research. And that’s despite the fact that the National Academy dis­cussed and rec­om­mend­ed some research in its 1982 report. Also for­mal­ly in detail in a report on solar geo­engi­neer­ing last year, even say­ing that—actually, now it’s the year before last—even say­ing that field exper­i­ments might make sense.

I per­son­al­ly got involved in this first around ’89 or some­thing, when I was a grad stu­dent here at MIT. I think I first got to speak to an acad­e­my com­mit­tee some­time in the late 90s on a very hot day in DC. And peo­ple nev­er real­ly argue back. I mean well, some do. But in gen­er­al, the kind of elite opin­ion is, Oh yes, it would make sense to know more about this, but some­how we just can’t.” And incred­i­bly, that’s still true.

So at this point there is a for­mal Chinese research pro­gram. There are sev­er­al research pro­grams in Europe. Now, there’s lots of peo­ple in North America doing research. We are and oth­ers by divert­ing mon­ey, or by phil­an­thropic mon­ey. But we need a seri­ous, open, inter­na­tion­al, no-nonsense research pro­gram, and we don’t have one. And that is in my view a kind of polit­i­cal cow­ardice.

Brand: So, are we talk­ing about— What kind of research— You know, are the Chinese and oth­ers doing? Are they scur­ry­ing around with cli­mate mod­els, or what?

Keith: So far, almost all cli­mate mod­els. There’s talk about doing field exper­i­ments, but almost noth­ing is hap­pen­ing. Our group and a few oth­ers at University of Washington and a few oth­er places have sort of been lead­ing in think­ing about how we could do very small out­door exper­i­ments. Not terms that would alter the cli­mate. Experiments that would help us under­stand some of the key process­es, so we’d bet­ter be able to judge the risks and effi­ca­cy.

But at this point I’d say it’s almost all cli­mate mod­el­ing, or actu­al­ly social sci­ence. So, in this case, because this is such a polar­iz­ing top­ic— (With good rea­son.) In fact, there’s evi­dence that there’s been more social sci­ence and gov­er­nance papers pub­lished by some mar­gin than there has been sci­ence. And we go to meet­ings and we most­ly talk about whether it’s okay to talk about it not actu­al­ly talk­ing about it.

Brand: Gernot, are there eco­nom­ic mod­els being explored in rela­tion to all this?

Wagner: Oh, in some sense too many. There’s too much of that going on. But just may­be two quick points. One, just to be clear when we say small-scale exper­i­ment. Sort of the most ambi­tious exper­i­ments in a sense, are talk­ing about emit­ting as much sul­fates as one com­mer­cial air­line does in one min­ute of flight. And there’s what, thir­ty thou­sand up there right now? These are tiny, tiny exper­i­ments. Yes, they are out­door, but still, they are not going to do any­thing to the plant. 

Now, a sec­ond bit is actually—and this is now over the last year, too, a very recent devel­op­ment. It is in fact a cou­ple major envi­ron­men­tal groups. So, EDF, where I was until six months ago. NRDC, the Natural Resource Defense Counsel, are the two most promi­nent ones that have in fact come out in favor of small-scale, care­ful, out­door research on the top­ic.

Brand: Is that a flip for them? Did they used to for­bid it?

Wagner: Not a flip— I mean, it’s the first time they’re com­ing out, right. It was always sort of EDF’s posi­tion on nuclear, for exam­ple, doesn’t exist; that there is none. Price CO2 and get out of the way, right. On solar geo­engi­neer­ing, very sim­i­lar. In some sense, there was no for­mal posi­tion at all. But now in fact they are com­ing out in favor.

Brand: So, David describe the kind exper­i­ment you’d like to see done on the whole plan­et.

Keith: Well, in the short term, no exper­i­ments on the whole plan­et. But I think what we’d like to do, what we’re try­ing to dri­ve, is a real research effort that you know, with­in a decade or so deliv­ers in an open way, to some lev­el to the world, real­ly deep knowl­edge about how this might be done in a tech­ni­cal sense. How you’d mon­i­tor it. What are the most like­ly fail­ure mod­es? How you would test those fail­ure mod­es. And some ideas about how we gov­ern this thing.

So in terms of indi­vid­u­al exper­i­ments we’re think­ing about? So, we’ve worked most­ly into the tech­ni­cal work on stratos­pher­ic aerosols. There are plen­ty of oth­er ideas, but that’s the one we work on. And the main idea forever has been the idea you could put sul­fu­ric acid in the stratos­phere because we know vol­ca­noes do it, and we know that it cools the plan­et. It doesn’t have huge side-effects. But there’s lots of ideas for things beyond sul­fates. We’ve been think­ing actu­al­ly about bases; cal­ci­um car­bon­ate, lime­stone. Which actu­al­ly turns out to be bet­ter opti­cal prop­er­ties than sul­fates. And it also looks like it would restore the ozone lay­er. So actu­al­ly, instead of dam­ag­ing the ozone lay­er fur­ther, it would actu­al­ly slight­ly restore it, coun­ter­act­ing some of the destruc­tion of the ozone lay­er that comes from chlo­ro­flu­o­ro­car­bons, chlo­rine com­pounds that we admit­ted over over the indus­tri­al era.

Brand: So instead of sul­fate par­ti­cles, it’s what that you want—

Keith: We’ve looked at cal­ci­um car­bon­ate. We also looked at dia­mond and so on. But to give you a sense of what the­se exper­i­ments would be, they’d be be below— 

Brand: Diamond.

Keith: Yeah.

Wagner: Diamond dust.

Brand: That sounds like an expen­sive pro­gram.

Keith: Well, you can— Before we pub­lished that paper, I actu­al­ly took the time to go to a deep source, alibaba​.com, and you can actu­al­ly get LPCVBD, low-pressure chem­i­cal vapor depo­si­tion bulk dia­monds, or sil­i­con car­bide for about a hun­dred bucks or so a kilo. And actu­al­ly do the math, that turns out to be afford­able, even at that price, for solar geo. But if you talk a lit­tle bit to the ven­dors, I don’t think there’s any­thing that hard about mak­ing them at that scale. Making big gem-quality dia­monds is hard. But mak­ing half-micron dia­monds is not that hard.

Brand: So say more about basi­cal­ly the chem­istry that’s sup­posed to hap­pen in the stratos­phere between the car­bon­ate, the sul­fate, and the dia­mond.

Keith: So, it turns out— Well no, I think those are dif­fer­ent ideas. But what we’ve start­ed to do is think a lot about the ways that the exist­ing ideas have weak­ness­es. Which are many. So, what’s bad about sul­fates? Well, sul­fates are bad because they absorb light, and they warm the low­er stratos­phere, and that house all sorts of prob­lems. Actually let­ting more water vapor in, which coun­ter­acts the effect and has oth­er bad impli­ca­tions.

Brand: And this is what Pinatubo and oth­er vol­ca­noes do nor­mal­ly. They put up tens of tons of sul­fate into the stratos­phere and do what they do. 

Keith: So that’s what we know nature does. So, a big vol­cano will put mil­lions of tons of sul­fur com­pounds in the stratos­phere. They last for a cou­ple years. And we’ve seen the cool­ing. We know that it will cool the plan­et. But we also know that it can dam­age the ozone lay­er, actu­al­ly, by mak­ing the chlo­rine we put their more active. And so we’ve been think­ing about ways that we could coun­ter­act that. 

But in the end, all of this is talk until we do a real exper­i­ments. So we are, are our lab, we actu­al­ly have now a lab exper­i­ment look­ing at some of the key chem­i­cal inter­ac­tions. Because com­put­er mod­els are great, but the com­put­er mod­els depend on actu­al knowl­edge of chem­istry we don’t have well enough. But to give you a sense of what the flight exper­i­ments we’d like to do would be, the­se would be very much like what our group has done before as nor­mal sci­ence. They be be small balloon-board field exper­i­ments would be up in the stratos­phere for a day or two, with a bal­loon and a bunch of sci­en­tific instru­ments, and you’d release sort of that much [indi­cates his fist] of some com­pound, and then look at what it did in a lit­tle puff or cloud in the stratos­phere.

So, what I think we need is a whole set of those, as well as devel­op­ment of a broad set of engi­neer­ing tech­nolo­gies, in a kind of sys­tems engi­neer­ing sense, to build up the capac­i­ty to do this and to mon­i­tor and ver­i­fy it. That real­ly is the kind of capac­i­ty we need to, I think, deliv­er to the world. Which doesn’t say it should be done. It says there’s enough evi­dence that this might be use­ful that we need to seri­ous­ly devel­op the knowl­edge of how to do it, so we can bet­ter make good informed deci­sions.

Brand: When you talk about the sys­tem engi­neer­ing, you’re engi­neer­ing a sys­tem that is not ful­ly under­stood in terms of its com­plex­i­ty and all the rest of it. Is that the respon­si­ble thing to do?

Keith: Well, we are com­mit­ted to that. So, with what we’re doing with car­bon diox­ide and the exist­ing aerosols, we are manip­u­lat­ing a sys­tem we don’t ful­ly under­stand. There’s no way out of that, save the time machine. 

I think the ques­tion is how we go about doing that. How we do it in a way that cou­ples human gov­er­nance with some lev­el of plan­e­tary man­age­ment. But I don’t real­ly see there is an alter­na­tive where we’re not alter­ing the sys­tem.

Wagner: Just to add a lit­tle bit of eco­nom­ics to this, right. So, in many ways it’s not a ques­tion of if, it’s a ques­tion of when. And of course if it’s a ques­tion of when, then it’s a ques­tion of how intel­li­gent­ly are we going to do this. Now, what I mean when I say this is, the most expen­sive thing of course is not mit­i­gat­ing cli­mate change, right. That costs us tril­lions of dol­lars. Mitigating cli­mate change, cut­ting CO2, is much much cheap­er than not act­ing. But of course, it’s in fact expen­sive. It’s also in the tril­lion dol­lar cat­e­go­ry.

Keith: Per year.

Wagner: Per year, yes. Now, we’re talk­ing about research now, which of course is right in the tens of mil­lions of dol­lars. But even at full-scale deploy­ment, solar geo­engi­neer­ing would be around single-digit bil­lions of dol­lars per year. Now, that’s not—

Brand: To accom­plish what lev­el of cool­ing?

Keith: To stop the warm­ing. And I think the con­cern is that this isn’t peo­ple— You may think this is a thing that big coun­tries like the US do. But as Oliver Morton’s book and oth­ers play at, the peo­ple most affect­ed by cli­mate change are many of the trop­i­cal coun­tries that feel the heat the most. And any of those coun­tries or a coali­tion have the tech­ni­cal capa­bil­i­ty and mon­ey to do this. And the pres­sure to do it will be large. And the moral pres­sure to actu­al­ly pro­tect real humans whose lives are in dan­ger will and should be large. And so, part of what you could look at— what I think not just our group but the larg­er research com­mu­ni­ty is doing is giv­ing peo­ple more knowl­edge.

Brand: Well, it sounds like part of the moral haz­ard here is that for a bil­lion dol­lars, a cou­ple bil­lion dol­lars per year, we can off­set what is cost­ing hun­dreds of bil­lions of dol­lars to do in the world’s econ­o­my in terms of mit­i­ga­tion of green­house gas­es. Well, that’s a pret­ty easy eco­nom­ic deci­sion to make, right?

Keith: Well… But, you can’t get out of the moral haz­ard. You define moral haz­ard (which is the right def­i­n­i­tion) as if you don’t feel the risk con­se­quences of your actions. So, that’s exact­ly the prob­lem with CO2 emis­sions. Because CO2 emis­sions build up very slow­ly over time, that the moral haz­ard is absolute­ly cen­tral to this, but it’s actu­al­ly about CO2 emis­sions.

So, part of a way to think about the rea­son that we’re not cut­ting CO2 emis­sions is that unlike local air pol­lu­tion, where we actu­al­ly have made lots of pro­gress— The US Clean Air Act will add about a year and a half to the life of aver­age Americans, and it cost close to 1% of GDP at peak. So, we have made pro­gress cut­ting local pol­lu­tion, and that’s because the gen­er­a­tion, the peo­ple, who spent the mon­ey to cut pol­lu­tion got the ben­e­fits. But for CO2 emis­sions, most of the risks are far in the future, and that’s the moral haz­ard, is the sim­ple thing to do is just keep putting CO2 in the air. 

Brand: So you’ve also got a slow ver­sus fast thing, in the sense that if you start doing solar radi­a­tion man­age­ment using some­thing the stratos­phere, you can get a pret­ty imme­di­ate respon­se. And all this mit­i­ga­tion stuff has huge delays of actu­al­ly get­ting it to hap­pen, and the CO2 is still up there being a prob­lem. This isn’t just mon­ey we’re talk­ing about, this is polit­i­cal time.

Keith: Yup.

Wagner: Solar geo­engi­neer­ing works on polit­i­cal cycles. You can actu­al­ly see the ben­e­fit if you pull the trig­ger now, before you need to get reelect­ed, right? You see effects. Which you don’t do with CO2 emis­sions.

Brand: We fixed cli­mate change on our watch!” Yeah, I can see this right now.

Wagner: New RNC plat­form, right?

Keith: I think the key ques­tion is how the two things are cou­pled.

Brand: Good. Say more.

Keith: And I think cen­tral polit­i­cal chal­lenge is how to cou­ple efforts to cut CO2 emis­sions, which after all are still pret­ty weak, with con­trol of what’s done about solar geo­engi­neer­ing. And there are lots of ideas about this. Ideas that range from for­mal coali­tions of states in a kind of club sys­tem where the states that are mak­ing deci­sions about solar geo, to get access to that club,” you have to agree to be doing some­thing about cut­ting emis­sions. There are more dis­trib­ut­ed ideas. But I think the inter­ac­tion those two things is the key.

But what I would urge, and it picks up direct­ly on what Gernot said, this evi­dence about people’s reac­tion to Lipitor, what I would urge is us not to assume that that nat­u­ral answer is that the pres­ence of the pos­si­bil­i­ty of solar geo­engi­neer­ing means we do less to cut CO2 emis­sions. That is by no means clear. There are ver­sions of the world that go both ways. And what we need to do is to do the best we can to tip it to a world where the pres­ence of solar geo means that we both get the ben­e­fits of reduced risk from solar geo, and do more to cut CO2 emis­sions.

Brand: So, is this still a hob­by? Are peo­ple still doing this out of mon­ey in their back pock­et? Is this a side­line for you guys?

Keith: For us, no. I mean, I had done this on and off. When I say I did it back to the late eight­ies, that was a hob­by. But, in the last few years, I have, and it’s part of what brought Gernot here, we’re a big group of us at Harvard, very much not just me.

Brand: How big?

Keith: Eight or ten pro­fes­sors. We’ve now got fundrais­ers to pay atten­tion to us, and we’re try­ing to raise phil­an­thropic mon­ey. They’ve built a real sig­nif­i­cant cen­ter. So that’s my entire effort. I Kind of put all my chips in the mid­dle of the table to do that. 

Brand: So there’s cou­ple of tens of mil­lions that have come into this kind of research?

Keith: No, that’s where we want to get to.

Brand: A cou­ple of mil­lions that’ve come into this research so far. From what kind of sources?

Keith: So, for us Bill Gates has been a sup­port­er for a long time, but he’s very clear that he doesn’t want the per­cep­tion or real­i­ty of a sin­gle per­son con­trol­ling that much. So he’ll match a sig­nif­i­cant amount of mon­ey, but most of the mon­ey needs to come from oth­er donors. We’ve got some oth­er promi­nent envi­ron­men­tal donors now to step up. And I think there’s rea­son to believe we’re going to get there. But we’re not…we’re not there yet.

Brand: How about China? Is that a gov­ern­ment pro­gram?

Keith: Yes.

Brand: Say more about what you know about that.

Keith: We know actu­al­ly quite a lot. The guy who runs the pro­gram, which is vis­it­ing us— We’re in the mid­dle of a two-week res­i­den­cy where we bring a bunch of peo­ple in. Young researchers and more expe­ri­enced ones on on solar geo­engi­neer­ing to our pro­gram at Harvard. So, John Moore, who’s not a Chinese nation­al but he’s lived there eight years or so, and he’s mar­ried and sort of estab­lished in China, he runs the pro­gram. I think it’s pret­ty open. He said there was very lit­tle push­back when he sort of final­ly got through the Chinese Academy of Sciences process. It’s a pro­gram that looks broad­ly at the using cli­mate mod­els to under­stand the effec­tive­ness and risks of solar geo­engi­neer­ing with a spe­cial focus on ice sheets, on whether or not it could be used suc­cess­ful­ly to reduce sea lev­el rise.

Brand: We’ll go to ques­tions from the room pret­ty short­ly. So far we’ve just talked about one whole vec­tor of geo­engi­neer­ing, which is solar radi­a­tion man­age­ment. But then there’s also good old car­bon diox­ide, the removal or reduc­tion. What’s going on in that? Because that seems to be sort of, well great, it means you get the car­bon diox­ide out of the atmos­phere; air cap­ture or what­ev­er the hell. Grow more forests. Everybody loves that, right? Or is there some for­bid­den­ness about car­bon reduc­tion?

Keith: For both of them, there’s a moral haz­ard. So, you talked… Sorry, your won­der­ful spouse talked about the fact that the extinc­tion is forever” mantra is real­ly impor­tant in the envi­ron­men­tal com­mu­ni­ty. It’s a way to moti­vate envi­ron­men­tal action. And so there are con­cerns about chang­ing the real­i­ty on the ground, if we admit that extinc­tion isn’t forever. And the same way, the efforts to cut CO2 emis­sions have been sig­nif­i­cant­ly built around the idea of what’s often called com­mit­ted warm­ing,” the idea that it’s a one-way valve when we put CO2 in the air. And so, both car­bon removal tech­nolo­gies and solar geo­engi­neer­ing are ways that we part­ly break that one-way valve. They imper­fect­ly allow us to go back in time. And I think you get some of the pre­cise same con­cern.

Wagner: Just to be clear, CO2 removal very much looks and feels still like mit­i­ga­tion, right. It’s about CO2. And of course we have to cut CO2. But of course what that also means is it’s also as expen­sive. Maybe even more expen­sive than putting a solar pan­el on your roof. So in oth­er words, the… (econ­o­mist) the free rid­er effects led us into this prob­lem in the first place. It is and no one’s self-interest to be doing enough to decrease, nor could we even if we want­ed to. 

Well, for solar geo­engi­neer­ing, not for car­bon geo­engi­neer­ing. For solar geo­engi­neer­ing, it’s the free dri­ver effect, right. It’s so cheap that one coun­try could in fact go ahead.

Keith: I should say mar­kets play in fun­da­men­tal­ly dif­fer­ent ways. I actu­al­ly found­ed a start up, Carbon Engineering, that’s involved in devel­op­ing direct cap­ture of CO2 from air. And for a tiny, crazy star­tup that’s gone pret­ty well. We sort of go to $30 mil­lion or so of com­mit­ted spend­ing. We built real hard­ware. But in that case, it’s much less con­tro­ver­sial because we’re just try­ing to make ultra low car­bon fuels from solar pow­er, and there are mar­kets in the sense of like the California low car­bon fuel stan­dard mar­ket.

So it looks much more like, from the point of view of us in that com­pa­ny (I’m right sort of 20% time in that com­pa­ny), we’re not try­ing to engi­neer the plan­et, we’re try­ing to find bet­ter ways to cut emis­sions that we com­pete with bio­fu­els and elec­tric vehi­cles.

Brand: And do you have com­pe­ti­tion?

Keith: Yeah. There’s a com­pa­ny in Switzerland called Climeworks that is sort of sim­i­lar scale to us. We’ve both done kind of ton-a-day pro­to­types. We’ve both got kin­da twen­ty engi­neers.

Brand: So the­se are com­mer­cial oper­a­tions that will get paid basi­cal­ly for the valu­able CO2 that you provide, or the valu­able reduc­tion of green­house gas emis­sions that you provide.

Keith: Yup. So, Climeworks has been focus­ing on green­house mar­kets first of all, because you have to take the CO2 out of the air to do green­hous­es. We’ve been focus­ing on what’s called air-to-fuels, the idea that solar power’s got real­ly cheap, but solar pow­er doesn’t make air­planes go. And so one of the path­ways is you take solar pow­er to make hydro­gen. You go CO2 from the air. Hydrogen plus CO2 to fuels that you could make as hydro­car­bons that were tru­ly carbon-neutral with­out a big land foot­print, say for air­craft.

So we’re not actu­al­ly, in the net, tak­ing car­bon out of the air. We’re just com­pet­ing with bio­fu­els. We use less land.

Brand: How valu­able is CO2 for green­house gas­es and putting in your soda and stuff like that?

Keith: Trucking CO2 is about a hun­dred and fifty bucks a ton most places. 

Brand: And is seques­ter­ing CO2 geo­log­i­cal­ly or in oth­er mod­es look­ing real­is­tic or not?

Keith: It’s cer­tain­ly real­is­tic. About fifty mil­lion tons a year of CO2 has been under­ground for enhanced oil recov­ery, and a very high frac­tion of that, may­be 99.99% of it stays for thousand-year time scales. So that’s cer­tain­ly tech­ni­cal­ly pos­si­ble. There have been some big CO2 dis­pos­al efforts, and none of them have had any real prob­lems.

But it’s that clear that peo­ple don’t like it much. And it’s also clear that in elec­tric pow­er, where a lot of that was focused, the dynam­ics of solar pow­er get­ting cheap­er have real­ly changed it. So it doesn’t look as impor­tant as it did before that the big drop in the price of solar PV.

Brand: How about the nat­u­ral process­es of fix­ing car­bon. Forests, and the stuff that goes on in the oceans, and all of that. What’s the sort of state of play of under­stand­ing and poten­tial encour­age­ment of those process­es?

Keith: Complicated, but I’d say there’s a way in which those fun­da­men­tal­ly don’t do the same job. So, at some lev­el the cli­mate prob­lem is caused by mov­ing car­bon from the geosphere where it’s been for tens of mil­lions of years into the active bios­phere, where then the car­bon can move back and forth between atmos­phere and land and ocean. And if what we do to deal with a car­bon prob­lem is take car­bon out of the air and build it up in the land, in forests, or wood, that’s a bit like build­ing a big stock of wood that could burn. And doing it in a place (I’m try­ing to get the anal­o­gy right) where there’s fires.

And that’s kind of lit­er­al­ly true. So, if we actu­al­ly manip­u­late the land bios­phere to get that much new car­bon in it, we don’t deal with the kind of millennial-scale cli­mate prob­lem. Because car­bon moves in and out of the bios­phere often on scales of well, in a forest fire, hours. And nat­u­ral­ly typ­i­cal­ly decades. And so if you build up all that car­bon, and then you have a warm­ing world, the car­bon wants to come out. So, I think those things can be use­ful, but in some sense it’s a dif­fer­ent cat­e­go­ry of thing.

Brand: How about the oceans? There’s talk about adding iron dust to the oceans and being able to fix that, and it goes down the abyssal plain and stays there forever. How about that?

Keith: Short answer is no. And actu­al­ly known for a long time. So, ocean geo­chem­i­cal mod­el­ing back to the ear­ly 90s showed pret­ty clear­ly that even if you remove the iron lim­i­ta­tion on the entire ocean, which would mean manip­u­lat­ing the entire ocean bios­phere, you may­be get one giga­ton, or a half giga­ton car­bon a year of export to the deep? Which is like 10% of cur­rent emis­sions. And at some basic lev­el, why would any­body think that to cut emis­sions by 10% net, you manip­u­late the whole whole ocean. It’s just not…serious.

Brand: Okay. First ques­tion here.

Audience 1: So, we talked a lot about tem­per­a­ture, and we’re talk­ing about cli­mate change. It’s kind of a nice sin­gle num­ber that we can point out and talk about. And it seems like the geo­engi­neer­ing is large­ly, like a lot of the rhetoric around it is focused on reduc­ing the tem­per­a­ture. I’m won­der­ing how well we know that there’s kind of a causal rela­tion­ship that reduc­ing tem­per­a­ture will kind of undo some of the effects of cli­mate change that we care about, or whether it’s kind of like an easy to mea­sure proxy.

Keith: Which effect are you par­tic­u­lar think­ing about?

Audience 1: I guess a lot of the…like, the ris­ing sea lev­els, weath­er, extreme weath­er events. I don’t know.

Keith: So, the answer is we don’t just think about tem­per­a­ture. Part of what I said in the intro is that in fact glob­al tem­per­a­ture is too easy. It’s sort of irrel­e­vant. So, it’s cer­tain— in a sense geo­engi­neer­ing is per­fect for glob­al tem­per­a­ture, but that’s a trick. So the ques­tion is exact­ly what you said. How well it actu­al­ly works for extreme pre­cip­i­ta­tion events, extreme tem­per­a­ture events. The things that actu­al­ly dri­ve a lot of the human impact. Crops, and sea lev­el. And because there isn’t a seri­ous research pro­gram, we don’t know as well as we should.

But the ear­ly evi­dence is actu­al­ly pret­ty promis­ing. So it looks like in fact for extreme pre­cip­i­ta­tion events, it’s rel­a­tive­ly more effec­tive (small amounts of solar geo­engi­neer­ing) than it is for tem­per­a­ture, in a way. And in fact there’s a recent arti­cle we’re try­ing to get a New York Times op-ed in that point­ed out that hur­ri­canes are being sup­pressed now because of the aerosol pol­lu­tion, because they’re par­tic­u­lar­ly sen­si­tive to that. And so that’s an exam­ple of an extreme event. So, short answer is you’re ask­ing the right ques­tion.

For ice sheets, the uncer­tain­ty is deep. So if you go down to the West Antarctic— And indeed, those pic­tures up weren’t just stock pho­tos. One of them was tak­en for me in a kayak in the West Antarctic. And the ques­tion is, will we trig­ger the West Antarctic ice sheet col­lapse, or have we already done that, which is actu­al­ly in the realm of pos­si­bil­i­ty. And the ques­tion of the extent to which solar geo­engi­neer­ing could coun­ter that, I think is a research ques­tion. We just don’t know very well.

Brand: This [dim­ming?] ques­tion is pret­ty inter­est­ing to me, because pre­sum­ably China is in the process of clean­ing up its air enough so that peo­ple can breathe in Beijing and so on. And the num­bers I got a while back [were] that basi­cal­ly coal burn­ing and what­not is putting up about a hun­dred mil­lion tons of the stuff into the low­er atmos­phere, which is keep­ing the plan­et may­be two or three degrees Celsius cool­er. And if that keeps clear­ing— I mean, this… Paul Crutzen start­ed talk­ing seri­ous­ly about geo­engi­neer­ing when he looked at that very issue back in 2006. So, how sev­ere is that change, and how rapid­ly is it com­ing? And should we stop clean­ing up the air because of all the­se prob­lems that will come with it? 

Keith: So, in that— [to Wagner:] Why don’t you go for it? 

Wagner: No, we should not stop doing it.

Brand: Oh, okay. [writ­ing in note­book] No…”

Wagner: Europe, 70s, right? Acid rain, enor­mous prob­lems from sul­fates in the tro­pos­phere, the low­er atmos­phere, start­ed clean­ing up in a seri­ous way, as did the US right around then. And in the 1990s with the Clean Air Act amend­ments and cap and trade for sul­fur diox­ide. Now for Europe itself, just Europe alone, decreas­ing tro­pos­pher­ic aerosol pol­lu­tion has like­ly increased tem­per­a­tures in the Arctic by half a degree Centigrade. Almost a degree Fahrenheit. So that’s the real trade­off, right. So, should we in fact be… Should we not stop killing peo­ple? Well, of course we should— Sorry, that’s a dou­ble neg­a­tive. Should we stop killing peo­ple? Yes, we should do that.

But, then there is the trade­off, right? Tropospheric aerosol ver­sus stratos­pher­ic aerosol injec­tion, where lat­est cal­cu­la­tions are a fifti­eth of the amount that is nec­es­sary—

Keith: Yeah. It’s actu­al­ly real­ly fifty times twenty-six. It’s an even big­ger num­ber, because for every ton of sul­fur we put in the low­er atmos­phere, putting a ton of sul­fur in the stratos­phere is about twenty-six times less health impact. And you need fifty times less sul­fur to get the same radia­tive effect.

Brand: So change is clear­ly under­way any­way and what we’re try­ing about is how we’re respond­ing to the­se changes that are occur­ring. I think there’s a ques­tion over here.

Audience 2: So, in the last pan­el there was lot of talk in kind of the ethics of deploy­ing the­se sci­ences in the actu­al field and like, get­ting con­sent from peo­ple and how do you go about get­ting that con­sent. So I’m won­der­ing, in this case, where you have a full-scale glob­al deploy­ment where it’s no longer an island of a hun­dred peo­ple. It’s lit­er­al­ly every­one in the entire­ty of nature. How do you go about get­ting con­sent to actu­al­ly go about one of the­se things if you want to, and if some­thing went wrong who would be at fault here? Who would you blame?

Keith: So, I think it’s…that that’s the big ques­tion. I think it’s both hard­er and eas­ier. Let me first say why it is eas­ier, because there are some ways in which there’s… Wonderful to have both pan­els back to back, and we actu­al­ly had a geo­engi­neer­ing gov­er­nance meet­ing at Asilomar delib­er­ate­ly echo­ing the old Asilomar meet­ing on recom­bi­nant DNA.

Brand: With way much less pro­duc­tiv­i­ty—

Keith: Yeah yeah, no kid­ding. But there’s one way that they’re real­ly dif­fer­ent. And this is a bit of a glib phrase, but I like to say it. Sulfur doesn’t have sex. So, if you do a tiny thing like an exper­i­ment, a field exper­i­ment, or you did a tiny test deploy­ment of sul­fur in the stratos­phere, it is cer­tain that if you stop putting sul­fur in the stratos­phere, after year or two you’re back where you start­ed. That’s real­ly dif­fer­ent. We can argue about how much, but there is at least some risk that lab­o­ra­to­ry or tiny field exper­i­ments with genetically-modified organ­isms could have glob­al impli­ca­tions. I’d say there’s no equiv­a­lent risk for solar geo. There’s no way, because none of the­se things self-reproduce. They don’t have sex. There’s no way that some tiny lit­tle lab­o­ra­to­ry thing has a glob­al impli­ca­tion—

Well, except one, I sup­pose, which is the idea. So, except for this moral haz­ard, the fact that the very idea that it’s pos­si­ble might change behav­ior. Yes, that’s true. But then so is speech.

Brand: Gernot, what do you got on this? 

Keith: But. Just one—

Brand: Oh.

Keith: On the oth­er side, how we actu­al­ly make a glob­al deci­sion like this is in some ways unprece­dent­ed, and I think the answer is we’re mak­ing it up as we go along. It’s a deep ques­tion.

Brand: Gernot, how do you han­dle the glob­al con­sen­sus ques­tion?

Wagner: So, one way it has been han­dled in a dif­fer­ent realm, where frankly there is no glob­al gov­ern­ment, right. We know that, for none of the­se glob­al prob­lems. For oceans, there’s the World Ocean Commission. Ex-politicians, fif­teen or so wise men and wom­en. Now, they don’t have any—this is not the world gov­ern­ment here. They don’t have any pow­er. It’s a talk­ing shop, if you will. But it is a place to give guid­ance. I mean frankly, step one in some sense is if it comes to decid­ing where to set the knob, take that deci­sion away from the sci­en­tists.

Brand: Agreed.

Wagner: So, the sci­ence can provide the tech­nol­o­gy. It’s every­body else—literally every­body else—who needs to be there when the deci­sion is being made where it to turn the knob. And just to be com­plete­ly clear about what we are try­ing to do, we’re not try­ing to deploy this. We’re to research it. We are try­ing to find a way to fig­ure out if the ben­e­fits to cost—since the ben­e­fits to costs turn out to be sort of in the realm of vac­ci­na­tions, sort of a thou­sand to one. Well, may­be we should be look­ing at this. Maybe there are real ben­e­fits there, given that what we know at the moment there are real ben­e­fits there, well may­be we should be look­ing [at] even even­tu­al­ly deploy­ing this kind of tech­nol­o­gy if the ben­e­fits out­weigh the costs to the tune of a thou­sand to one.

Brand: Is there a rea­son to think that the sort of major green­house gas emit­ters; Europe, North America, China, and South Asia, might them­selves come to, among them­selves, some agree­ment that they are the major caus­es, they have major respon­si­bil­i­ty, and that agree­ment among them—which you’ve already got pieces of in rela­tion to cli­mate diplo­ma­cy already, that they could in cahoots basi­cal­ly set some­thing like this going at scale? With the full knowl­edge and com­pli­ance of oth­ers, but that they’re tak­ing the respon­si­bly of mak­ing it hap­pen.

Keith: Certainly it could hap­pen. I think the con­ven­tion­al view is that it’s the big coun­tries that dri­ve it. And at some lev­el, if the big coun­tries real­ly don’t want some­thing to hap­pen, they have ways to do that. But I think this is in all tech­nol­o­gy, because there’s noth­ing actu­al­ly tech­ni­cal­ly that hard about it. Because it’s cheap, it’s real­ly unclear where the lead­er­ship in deploy­ment might come from. And it might well be coun­tries that see the biggest risk.

So, in our group and oth­er groups, we’ve begun to engage. So we had a won­der­ful stu­dent who works now at Harvard’s Center for International Development who around the Philippines talk­ing to both lay peo­ple and pro­fes­sion­als in the Philippians, giv­ing them a pret­ty neg­a­tive, actu­al­ly, ini­tial video about solar geo­engi­neer­ing and ask­ing them what they want to do. And the result is, they’re so eager to engage they may end up pay­ing us mon­ey to engage. So it real­ly is dif­fer­ent.

And like­wise, some­body in the last day was telling a sto­ry about inter­act­ing with peo­ple in the Sahel region, who have such con­cerns about cli­mate vari­abil­i­ty, if they hear there are ways to man­age that, they are deeply inter­est­ed. So it’s very unclear what shapes the pol­i­tics of this. And it may not be what you expect.

Brand: So, is it…hm. There used to be great fears that there would be uni­lat­er­al geo­engi­neer­ing. So, China sud­den­ly decides to geo­engi­neer, and those of us liv­ing down­wind across the Pacific decide that’s an act of war, and bad things hap­pen. What’s the state of wor­ry about uni­lat­er­al geo­engi­neer­ing?

Keith: I think it’s still there. I think there is an under­ly­ing abil­i­ty and ten­den­cy to uni­lat­er­al­ism. But on the flip­side, this is a world where pow­er is dif­fus­ing. States in many respects have less pow­er they did have a cen­tu­ry ago. And I think real out and out uni­lat­er­al action seems to me an unlike­ly thing. I think more of coali­tions, and don’t for­get the role of of civil soci­ety. States are not the only actor here. There are lots of ways in which non-governmental orga­ni­za­tions, or things like a glob­al ocean com­mis­sion, which is part­ly estab­lished by NGOs, can shape what hap­pens. We’re not liv­ing in the 50s any­more. It’s not all sim­ply what states do.

Brand: So, can some of the research with the actu­al atmos­pher­ic exper­i­ments be done uni­lat­er­al­ly? Can you guys go up basi­cal­ly—

Keith: Yup.

Brand: —over North America with planes, put stuff in the stratos­phere and see what hap­pens?

Keith: Yup, for sure. 

Wagner: So, it’s just not planes, right. It’s bal­loons, to draw a line between real line between deploy­ment and—

Keith: And I mean, a flip­side is if we get real­ly extreme restric­tions on research, which haven’t hap­pened but might hap­pen, will you see kind of civil dis­obe­di­ence? So, there are won­der­ful videos all over the Internet of some­times just par­ents and chil­dren who’ve got a look with their own tech­nol­o­gy and hands and mon­ey, at the black­ness of space, and the curve arc of sky. This amaz­ing thing that most of us nev­er see. And you can do with a weath­er bal­loon and an iPhone. And it’s real­ly small tech­nol­o­gy.

So it’s not that expen­sive to get to the stratos­phere. A thou­sand bucks. And could imag­ine if there real­ly are restric­tions that say no exper­i­ments ever, peo­ple will do stunts, art stunts, as a way to show how odd a restric­tion that would be, because it would be restric­tion on inten­tion, not on action.

Brand: There you go. We are at the end of this hour. Thank you very much. Thanks for fix­ing the cli­mate for us. This is going to be a great relief in this cen­tu­ry, to solve cli­mate change. But it’ll take a cen­tu­ry, won’t it?

Keith: Thanks for lead­ing the way in think­ing about it.

Brand: Alright. Thank you.

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