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The Boston Globe

Ideas

Brainiac

Should mankind block out the sun?

And other recent highlights from the Ideas blog

The planet is warming, and here’s one way to put the brakes on, if we dare: Block the sun. Or so says a cover story in Harvard Magazine, which describes how David Keith, an applied physicist at Harvard, is developing a technique for what’s known as solar engineering.

It’s not familiar to think of the sun as a problem, but in a sense it is: As we saturate the atmosphere with heat-trapping greenhouse gases, the real source of all that heat is the sun itself. If only we could dim the effects of our cherished star, we’d be free to emit to our hearts’ delight—or at least buy ourselves some time.

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