Nasa plans to inject Earth's atmosphere with millions of tons ice to tackle climate change

Nasa's idea of injecting Earth's atmosphere with millions of tons of ice is known as "geoengineering"

By Web Desk
March 01, 2024
A representational image of a plane that scientists would use to inject two tons of particles of ice 11 miles high each week, which would freeze the water that would fall back to Earth. — Midjourney/File

Nasa scientists have unveiled an audacious plan to counteract climate change by introducing ice particles into the sky.

The goal is to spray tons ice particles into the upper atmosphere from high-altitude aircraft that rises 58,000 feet above the ground, which is more than 20,000 feet higher than commercial aircraft, according to Daily Mail.


The idea is that by freezing water, water vapour would be removed before it could be converted into greenhouse gas emissions, which would keep heat from escaping into space and eventually raise Earth's

The water would be frozen by the ice particles and fall back to Earth, eliminating extra water vapour and dehydrating the stratosphere, which is where water transforms into a gas that traps heat.

Nasa and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) collaborated on the idea.

The concept of drying the upper atmosphere is the most recent addition to what some scientists are referring to as a last-ditch arsenal of strategies to combat climate change through altering the planet's seas or atmosphere.

Known as "geoengineering," it is frequently disapproved of due to possible adverse effects and is typically discussed in addition to emission reductions rather than as a substitute for lowering carbon pollution.

Lead author Joshua Schwarz, a physicist at Noaa, stated: "This isn´t something that we can even implement right now. This is about exploring what might be possible in the future and identifying research directions."

Schwarz pointed out that the efforts would only cool the atmosphere by 1/70th, or the same amount of warmth as CO2 provides, and would not counteract its effects.