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Keith's Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment (SCoPEx) in the U.S., which aims to test a form of geoengineering known as Solar Radiation Management, seems to be moving forward.These technical aspects of the experiment are far less important than its political, social and geopolitical implications. After all, the risks of geoengineering could not be more serious. The results from a "small-scale" experiment would not amount to a credible assessment of the effects of deploying SRM at the scale needed for geoengineering.Given that geoengineering is, by nature, not testable, all experiments like SCoPEx can do is create momentum for larger and longer experiments. Indeed, as the Center for International Environmental Law and the Heinrich Boell Foundation's recent report, "Fuel to Fire," points out, fossil-fuel companies have been investing in geoengineering for decades. For them, the promise of a technological get-out-of-jail-free card is an ideal pretext for continuing their highly profitable, destructive activities.In fact, Keith's own company, Carbon Engineering, recently received $68 million from Occidental Petroleum, Chevron, and the coal giant BHP (Billiton) to develop another potentially dangerous geoengineering approach -- Direct Air Capture, which takes CO2 from the atmosphere, to be used or stored.
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