May we engineer the climate?


Not only is the science of climate engineering uncertain; the legal issues are also highly uncertain. Although existing international law does not specifically limit the freedom of states to undertake climate engineering, the international community would likely demand a say should climate engineering move from the realm of speculation to concrete proposals. The experience of other environmental regimes, however, suggests that developing an international decision-making mechanism would be difficult, and that the international community might opt for a simple prohibition on climate engineering on grounds of ‘precaution’.

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Bodansky, D. May we engineer the climate?. Climatic Change 33, 309–321 (1996).

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  • International Community
  • Legal Issue
  • Environmental Regime
  • Climate Engineering
  • Concrete Proposal