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Dr. Cool

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Science  18 Oct 2013:
Vol. 342, Issue 6156, pp. 307-309
DOI: 10.1126/science.342.6156.307

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Climate and energy specialist David Keith has become a prominent—and controversial—public face for geoengineering, the concept of intentionally tinkering with Earth's climate system in order to combat global warming. Since the 1990s, he has helped move the concept into the mainstream, along the way attracting influential allies such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and starting a geoengineering company that wants to suck carbon out of the atmosphere. Now, he's hoping to breach another frontier, proposing one of the first field experiments aimed at understanding another geoengineering technology that would use a balloon to release sun-blocking particles of sulfuric acid in the stratosphere. Now at Harvard University, Keith is also working to establish rules for such experiments, in part to persuade governments and the public that they can be safe and useful.