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Documentaries & Non-Fiction Series

VICE Preview: Can “Engineering Earth” Slow Down or Stop Global Warming? 

VICE Preview: Can “Engineering Earth” Slow Down or Stop Global Warming?
Photo Credit: Jerry Ricciotti / VICE on HBO
Photo Credit: Jerry Ricciotti / VICE on HBO

If you’re even remotely engaged in the global warming/climate change “debate,” you know we’re already in trouble. CO2 emissions are warming our planet and causing extreme weather events. Scientists agree that this is a man-made problem. So, is there anything to be done or is it already too late?

In “Engineering Earth,” we learn that greenhouse gas emissions are at unprecedented levels and still rising. As climate deniers and their allies in industry and government thwart conservationists’ efforts, some scientists are working to develop a back-up plan: use technology to “geoengineer” the Earth’s atmosphere and reduce the effects of climate change. But what does that entail and what, if any, are the moral repercussions of this new technology?

Photo Credit: Jerry Ricciotti / VICE on HBO

Some important questions to ponder (before or after you watch):

  • Why don’t we recycle energy? If we’ve found ways to recycle water and plastic and metal, why can’t we recycle energy?
  • With new technology comes the possibility of misuse. How can we regulate geoengineering when we’re not sure if/how it’ll work and what the long-term repercussions might be?
  • How do we convince humanity to drastically reduce our carbon footprint? It’s not enough to be carbon neutral; we need to be carbon negative.


Shane Smith and Ben Anderson find out how this technology would work and how effective this radical, and potentially dangerous, plan could be.

VICE on HBO airs Fridays at 7:30 and 11.

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