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Argument: Volcanic clouds do great damage, as would solar shading

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Alan Robock. "20 reasons why geoengineering may be a bad idea". Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist. 2008: "1. Effects on regional climate. Geoengineering proponents often suggest that volcanic eruptions are an innocuous natural analog for stratospheric injection of sulfate aerosols. The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo on the Philippine island of Luzon, which injected 20 megatons of sulfur dioxide gas into the stratosphere, produced a sulfate aerosol cloud that is said to have caused global cooling for a couple of years without adverse effects. However, researchers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research showed in 2007 that the Pinatubo eruption caused large hydrological responses, including reduced precipitation, soil moisture, and river flow in many regions.

Simulations of the climate response to volcanic eruptions have also shown large impacts on regional climate, but whether these are good analogs for the geoengineering response requires further investigation. Scientists have also seen volcanic eruptions in the tropics produce changes in atmospheric circulation, causing winter warming over continents in the Northern Hemisphere, as well as eruptions at high latitudes weaken the Asian and African monsoons, causing reduced precipitation.6 In fact, the eight-monthlong eruption of the Laki fissure in Iceland in 1783–1784 contributed to famine in Africa, India, and Japan. If scientists and engineers were able to inject smaller amounts of stratospheric aerosols than result from volcanic eruptions, how would they affect summer wind and precipitation patterns? Could attempts to geoengineer isolated regions (say, the Arctic) be confined there? Scientists need to investigate these scenarios. At the fall 2007 American Geophysical Union meeting, researchers presented preliminary findings from several different climate models that simulated geoengineering schemes and found that they reduced precipitation over wide regions, condemning hundreds of million of people to drought."

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