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Students showcasing research posters at the 2015 GCEP Symposium

Energy Seminar: David Keith: Moderate, Temporary, and Responsive Solar Geoengineering

January 14, 2019 - 4:30pm to 5:20pm
NVIDIA Auditorium, Jen-Hsun Huang Engineering Center

Free and open to all.

Event Sponsor: 
Precourt Institute for Energy
Contact Email:

The combination of inertia and uncertainty makes the coupled climate-economic system dangerously hard to control. Emissions cuts are necessary to manage climate risks, but they are not necessarily sufficient. If the climate's sensitivity is at the high end of current estimates it may be too late to avert dramatic consequences for human societies and natural ecosystems even if emissions are eliminated instantaneously. Prudence demands understanding of methods that might limit environmental risks posed by the accumulation of fossil carbon in the atmosphere. The engineered alteration of the earth’s radiation budget—solar geoengineering—offers a fast means of managing climate risk, but it entails a host of new risks and it cannot fully compensate for the risk posed by the carbon burden. Professor David Keith will review the science and technology and of solar geoengineering and show new results from climate models, lab experiments, and integrated assessment models. 

Speaker Biography:

David Keith has worked near the interface between climate science, energy technology, and public policy for twenty-five years. Best known for his work on the science, technology, and public policy of solar geoengineering, David led the development of Harvard’s Solar Geoengineering Research Program. He took first prize in Canada's national physics prize exam, won MIT's prize for excellence in experimental physics, and was one of TIME magazine's Heroes of the Environment. David is a Professor at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Harvard Kennedy School, and founder of Carbon Engineering, a company developing technology to capture CO2 from ambient air.