M-RCBG Senior Fellow-Led Study Group: Wake Smith

Is Solar Geoengineering bound to be Unethical?
Wednesday December 1, 4:00 – 5:15PM 
Zoom meeting. Register HERE

 Solar geoengineering is a nascent and controversial climate intervention premise that would not obviate the need for mitigation but could nonetheless prove useful in cooling an overheated planet.  There are many reasons for caution here, including myriad scientific unknowns and daunting governance challenges.  However, there is also a normative shadow that seems to hover over this field.  Is solar geoengineering somehow unethical?  Wake Smith seeks to puzzle it out.  Skeptics welcome. 

Wake Smith wearing glen plaid jacket and blue t-shirt in front of shelves of booksWake Smith is a Lecturer in Yale College, where he teaches what is understood to be the world’s first undergraduate survey course on climate engineering. The core of that course will be published in book form in March 2022 by the Cambridge University Press under the title Pandora’s Toolbox: The Hopes and Hazards of Climate Intervention. As a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School, he has published papers on the aeronautics, costs, and deployment logistics of stratospheric aerosol injection as well as on the proper governance of research into these technologies. He finished his business career in private equity with New York based New State Capital. He previously served as: Chairman and President of Pemco World Air Services; Chief Operating Officer of Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings; and President of the flight training division of Boeing. He holds a BA in History from Yale and an MBA from Harvard. His faculty sponsor is Joseph Aldy, Professor of the Practice of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. Email: ​wakesmith@hks.harvard.edu