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April 24 @ 7:00 am - 11:30 pm


Marine Cloud Brightening (MCB) is a geoengineering technique currently being tested by scientists to address climate change. It involves the injection of tiny saltwater particles into marine stratocumulus clouds to increase their reflectivity and cool the Earth. 

About Marine Cloud Brightening: 


  • MCB aims to explore how altering atmospheric particles, known as aerosols, can impact cloud reflectivity.  
  • By releasing tiny aerosol particles into the atmosphere, researchers aim to enhance cloud brightness, leading to increased sunlight reflection. 


  • Aerosols made from sea salt are injected into specific types of clouds, such as marine stratocumulus clouds, to increase their reflectivity.  
  • This phenomenon is similar to the visible effects seen in satellite images of clouds brightened by ship emissions, known as “ship tracks.” 

Goals of the Marine Cloud Brightening Program: 

  • Research Objectives: The MCB program seeks to better understand the effects of pollution aerosols on clouds and investigate the feasibility of using aerosols to reduce climate warming while greenhouse gas concentrations are reduced to safer levels. 
  • Benefits and Risks: Scientists aim to understand the benefits, risks, and efficacy of intentionally using aerosols to reduce warming through different implementations of marine cloud brightening. 

Aerosol and Climate Effect: 

  • Impact of Aerosols: Aerosols from human emissions have a cooling effect on the climate, offsetting a portion of global warming. However, the reduction in aerosol concentration due to air quality regulations contributes to global warming. 
  • Uncertainty: Uncertainty about the effects of aerosols on clouds contributes to uncertainty in future warming projections, highlighting the need for further research in this area. 

Challenges and Risks Associated with MCB: 

  • Technical Feasibility: Implementing MCB on a large scale presents engineering complexities in terms of design, cost, maintenance, and operation of spraying devices. 
  • Environmental Impacts: MCB could potentially alter cloud patterns and precipitation, affecting regional climate and hydrological cycles. Changes in clouds over broad regions can impact atmospheric circulation, weather, and precipitation. 
  • Ethical Issues: MCB raises ethical dilemmas regarding human intervention in natural processes and the governance surrounding its implementation. 
  • Moral Hazard: There is a concern that reliance on MCB may lead to complacency in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to climate change, posing a moral hazard. 


Marine Cloud Brightening (MCB) holds promise as a potential climate intervention, but it remains in the early stages of research and development.  

Scientists are diligently exploring its feasibility, efficacy, and potential impacts while acknowledging the associated risks and uncertainties.  

Sustainable human adaptation and mitigation efforts remain crucial in addressing climate change, with careful consideration of the implications of geoengineering techniques like MCB. 

Mains Question: 

  1. Discuss the potential of Marine Cloud Brightening (MCB) as a climate intervention strategy and evaluate the associated challenges and ethical considerations. (150 WORDS)


April 24
7:00 am - 11:30 pm
Event Category:
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