This bears a great risk for residents of coastal areas: ice melting and the glaciers destruction at the poles will lead to an increase in sea level across the planet. However, as stated in a study by scientists of Yale University, published in the Environmental Research Communications journal, the poles can be frozen again. This project is quite real and surprisingly cheap, the New Izvestia reports.
For this, reactive aircraft should spray microscopic aerosol particles from a great height into the atmosphere at 60 degrees of northern and southern latitude – it is approximately Anchorage and the southern tip of Patagonia. The flight should occur at an altitude of 13 thousand meters – this is higher than the airliner cruising height. The aerosols will slowly drift to the poles, slightly shading the Earth surface.
“There is a widespread and reasonable concern about the use of aerosols for cooling the planet”, phys.org quotes the study leading author Wage Smith. “But if the benefit in some place exceeds the risks, this is at the poles”.
“Injections” could be done seasonally – in the spring and early summer. The same jet aircraft park could serve both hemispheres, crossing to the opposite pole as the seasons change. Scientists calculated that 125 aircrafts would be enough to cool the regions lying above 60 degrees of northern latitude, two degrees Celsius per year, which would return them to pre-industrial average temperatures. Costs are estimated at 11 billion dollars a year – these are less than a third of the costs that are planned to cool the entire planet for the same two degrees.
Cooling at the poles would provide direct protection of only a small part of the planet, although in the middle latitudes a certain decrease in temperature will also be observed.
Text: Maria Sokolova, photo: Olga Alexandrova