In the readings and videos, it has been noted that geoengineering for modifying earth’s climate, has raised several questions regarding its effectiveness, earth’s climate and adverse effects and regulation. However, the existing legal system and treaty regimens are not satisfactory to adequately monitoring or regulating the processes of geoengineering (Vaughan and Lenton 2011). Thus, the key theme revealed from the reading and videos is the need for the development of a governing framework for geoengineering.
Geoengineering is a large-scale human intervention with the earth in order to change the earth’s climate. There are several techniques made by human intention to manage the climate change and related issues, to control earth’s climate, global temperature stabilization sucking excess carbon dioxide from the air. However, there are several criticism against geo-engineering. So it’s the governance’s question, who can control the technology, how and where these are deployed. A moral question has been raised in this context that would deploying geoengineering technology give us the free pass to continue the carbon polluting activities? There are also social angles of the issue, that who is paying for the technology, who is getting profit from it and who is impacted? Considering the criticism while proceeding with the geoengineering development, we need to develop precautionary principles (Habib 2017). These principles, provided by UNESCO include, “proportionality, scientific analysis, scientific plausibility, possibility of unacceptable harm, pre-defined intervention, systematic consideration and consequences of moral inaction. There are three important elements of precautionary principles, while considering geoengineering. The first one is “the burden of pre-flaws with the advocates to demonstrate the safety of the new geoengineerig technology. The second principle is to incorporate ethical responsibility for maintaining the integrity of natural eco-systems. The third principle is the acknowledgement of fallibility of human understanding.
The current international legal framework regulating geoengineering framework is jumbled along with several gaps in the regulation, especially with respect to the regulation in areas beyond the national jurisdiction of solar radiation management methods (Habib 2017). None of the instruments is significant to regulate the geo-engineering methods, highlighting the need for more comprehensive governance model for taking these technologies more seriously in the policy sphere.
The development of an international geoengineering governing framework is important to meet several normative governance principles for SRM to these criteria. A multilateral regime is desirable for meeting the normative principles for the regulation of SRM. The international reglations for SRM (solar radiation management) will eliminate the decision on SRM deployment from the community of nonstate players; nonstate actors’ deployment would violate the governance principles. There is a lack of transparency through the SRM activities, thus, establishing transparency through the regime is important for meeting the principles (Lloyd and Oppenheimer 2014). On the other hand, the incentives for complying with an internationbal framework and the compensation for non-compliance would reduce the chances of unilateral actions, thereby improving the chances of meeting the normative principles of global public consent. Finally, a legal and effective governance regime would be able to decrease the risk of a “moral hazard” dilemma, whereas mitigating the further weakening of prospects of SRM, through imposing suitable decision-making processes.
A successful regime would help to make it difficult to raise the SRM se, relative to the implementation of emission mitigation and adaptation of innovations.
Habib, B., 2017. 09.1 Ben Habib - Geoengineering and the Precautionary Principle. [online] YouTube. Available at: < [Accessed 19 Apr. 2017].
Habib, B., 2017. 09.2 Ben Habib - International Governance of Geoengineering. [online] YouTube. Available at: < [Accessed 19 Apr. 2017].
Lloyd, I.D. and Oppenheimer, M., 2014. On the design of an international governance framework for geoengineering. Global Environmental Politics, 14(2), pp.45-63.
Vaughan, N.E. and Lenton, T.M., 2011. A review of climate geoengineering proposals. Climatic change, 109(3-4), pp.745-790.