The Earth is experiencing the increase in the average worldwide temperature, and getting hotter and hotter. The effect is termed as – Global Warming, and the study related to it, Climate Engineering has its researchers worried about the consequences. Experts and scientists all over the world are looking forward to controlling the climate change to prevent the catastrophic events from occurring.
A far-reaching idea would be to target the heat source, by a method called as solar radiation management. It is a pretty simple method of reducing heat, and it involves spraying aerosol particles into the stratosphere in order to reflect light away from Earth. Not so surprisingly, it happens naturally as one of the Earth’s natural mechanisms to control surface heat. It typically occurs during the time of eruptions of massive volcanoes.
Over a quarter-century years ago, a volcano in the Philippines — Pinatubo, had a grand eruption, which led to spraying of over a cubic mile of rock and ash, along with approximately over twenty million tons of sulfur dioxide gas into the skies. These gas clouds wandered and spread around the world, continuously combining itself with water vapor to make aerosols, which are nothing but tiny droplets that reflect a little bit of sunlight away from the Earth. In turn, the average global temperature of the planet dropped by about 1 degree Fahrenheit for several years.
The events like the 1991 eruption of Pinatubo are the most significant natural influencers of the climate around the world. So the next time such an event occurs, NASA wants to study its effects on the environment and plans to execute it by sending balloons into the sky to measure its outcomes. Alan Robock, a climatologist at Rutgers University, who studies volcanic eruptions and has been involved in discussions about the rapid-response project, says in a statement, “This is important if we’re ever going to do geoengineering.” He continues further, “but even if there were no such thing as geoengineering, it’s still important to understand how volcanoes affect climate.”
The enormous eruptions of the volcanoes can even cause what’s referred to as a “volcanic winter.” 1815 blowup of Mount Tambora in Indonesia, dubbed as the largest volcanic eruption in recorded history caused a whole year without summer, leading to snow in Albany, New York in June of 1816. Now the scientists are putting the focus on the newly active volcano at Mount Agung in Bali. Moreover, the holiday plans of several Australians might be in trouble, as the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has recently issued a new travel warning for Bali due to fears of a volcano eruption on the famous tourist island.
Agung, which recently began to erupt in last November, could induce a significant amount of cooling effect if it has a massive eruption. So even if it blows up, the eruption needs to be massive enough for the scientists to study its noticeable effects. “If the solar radiation management is halted for any reason, then rapid warming would result, with likely catastrophic consequences,” says Dennis Hartmann, a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington in a statement to a tech and science website.