Today’s Solutions: April 21, 2024

A team based from the University of Washington, the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), and the Pacific Northwest National Library are developing a climate solution inspired by an unexpected source: toxic emissions generated by ships traveling across the ocean. These bright white clouds that ships create produce a cooling effect through naturally occurring processes in the atmosphere.

The Marine Cloud Brightening Project is an open, international collaboration of atmospheric scientists and other experts to advance understanding of cloud responses to aerosol particles. We specifically are interested in exploring the potential for intentionally brightening marine low clouds by augmenting the natural marine aerosol particle population,” the researchers write on their site.

The researchers are now working on methods to achieve this cooling effect without the greenhouse gases and pollutants that ships release. The idea is to use seawater to create the particles in the sky—an abundant and free source that is comprised of organic material that won’t further damage the environment, and most of which gets reabsorbed by the ocean once they’re finished with the trials. The process that they are establishing can also be conducted at sea level and won’t rely on aircraft, which keeps costs and associated emissions low, or even better, non-existent.

Their current plan is based on a three-step approach. First, they are exploring whether they can increase reflectivity in man-made clouds in the first place, then they must model their results to better understand how the project would influence local and global climate so that they can dodge any adverse consequences. The last step is to study how to generate a spray system that will form the right size and concentration of particles required for their field experiments.

Although the team is still in the process of readying itself for its first trials, the solution has a lot of potential and very few risks associated with it, making it a feasible strategy for addressing climate change.

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

3 simple ways to save an extra $250 per month

Everyone loves to save money, so here are three easy ways you can free up $250 in your budget per month. Cancel subscriptions you ...

Read More

APA, AAPI, APIDA or AANHPI? The history and significance of the “Asian Americ...

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” ― Lao Tzu By Arielle Tiangco Weeks ago, seated cross-legged on my couch, I ...

Read More

Playing video games benefit key regions of the brain

A recent study from Georgia State University found that sensorimotor decision-making skills were superior in regular video game players to those that didn’t play ...

Read More

Novel blood cancer treatment effective in three-fourths of trial patients

According to new findings from an ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical research trial, a novel investigational immunotherapy resulted in successful response rates for 73 percent ...

Read More