Geoengineering – a new form for warfare?

Paul Raven @ 02-01-2008

flooded city Jamais Cascio has been having some unsettling thoughts about the potential of geoengineering technologies to provide nation-states with subtle yet powerful alternatives to conventional warfare:

“Geoengineering as a military strategy would appear to offer a variety of benefits. Research can be done out in the open, taking advantage of civilian work on anti-global warming geoengineering ideas. If my argument that nuclear weapons and open-source warfare have made conventional warfare essentially obsolete is correct, climate-based warfare would offer an alternative non-nuclear weapon, one that would be out of the reach of non-state actors. And the more we learn about how human activities alter the climate — in order to alter those activities — the more options might open up for intentionally harmful manipulation.”

Yikes. How’s that for taking the edge off your new year optimism, eh? 😉

Still, it strengthens my theory that nation-states are a root cause of a lot of the challenges we face. Call me a hippie if you will, but isn’t it high time we got over this arbitrary geographical factionalism and realised we’re all in the same boat? [Image by Cikaga Jamie]

[tags]climate change, geoengineering, warfare, politics[/tags]
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2 Responses to “Geoengineering – a new form for warfare?”

  1. bee says:

    You have too narrowly focused on the use of this technology by nations. Why not individuals and terrorists?

    You need to update your mental model to the new world order where individuals will likely wield these technologies upon others.

  2. Paul Raven says:

    Bee, individuals and terrorists with the money and resources to create the sort of technologies needed for geoengineering might as well be considered to be nation-states.

    If there are rogue individuals with that much clout on the loose, we’re already finished. And if you say “Osama bin Laden”, you’ll be able to hear me laughing from wherever you’re sat.

    Stop worrying about bogey-men with funny names and foreign costumes, seriously. After all, where do they get their funding from? And who creates the discontent that allows them to get a foothold? Terrorism is a symptom, not the disease.