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Cautionary Tales with Tim Harford

The Man Who Played With Hurricanes

Today, the idea of controlling the weather is controversial. Scientists who research geoengineering have even received death threats. But once upon a time, people were optimistic about remaking the climate in entire regions of the world. They approached this science with a touching faith in the power of human creativity.

Absent-minded genius Irving Langmuir was one such scientist. He dreamt of making deserts bloom and conjuring rain from an arid sky. He even believed that his experiments with a hurricane had succeeded in redirecting its path.

Why did we stop trying to control the weather? And might geoengineering help us solve climate change - or have we missed our chance?

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Cautionary Tales with Tim Harford
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