As governments make slow progress towards alleviating climate change and denial marks the Trump Administration’s approach to the global crisis, scientists have hatched a crazy $500 billion scheme to refreeze the Arctic. Led by physicist Steven Desch of Arizona State University, a team of 14 scientists concocted a plan to replenish Arctic sea ice using ten million wind-powered pumps.
The strategy involves deploying millions of renewably-powered pumps to send water onto the surface of Arctic ice during the winter. In theory, that water would then freeze, thickening the ice before summer. Desch said the pumps could add around three feet to the current layer of sea ice. If the ice is thicker, he argued, it would last longer and reduce the danger of sea ice vanishing completely during the summer.
The paper’s abstract states that the Arctic could be utterly devoid of summer sea ice by the year 2030. If that occurs, the ocean would absorb the sunlight it once reflected – so replenishing sea ice now is an imperative. The paper goes on to state that the 2015 Paris agreement won’t be enough to halt the consequences of global warming.
Desch told the Observer, “Our only strategy at present seems to be to tell people to stop burning fossil fuels. It’s a good idea but it is going to need a lot more than that to stop the Arctic’s sea ice from disappearing.”
by Lacy Cooke