Ocean Fertilization Project Goes Rogue

Recently we reported on ground-breaking scientific research related to the fertilization of phytoplankton in nutrient-poor areas by iron addition. This research is important for understanding the global carbon cycle, but US entrepreneur Russ George recently co-opted this in an attempt to sequester carbon dioxide, make money selling carbon credits, and foster the recovery of a local salmon population. This type of so-called geoengineering is problematic and sometimes even dangerous for a number of reasons (link to above), which is why the rogue fertilization attempt is making headlines the world over.

 

In this New York Times article, Henry Fountain (@henryfountain) discussed why scientists are outraged.

 

Jeff Tollefson, in this piece for the scientific journal Nature, talks about the complexities of the incident.

 

Haida Gwaii. The iron dump occured a few hundred miles off the coast here. Photo courtesy the Disaffected Lib

 

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