Geoengineers propose freezing high-altitude water vapor to slow climate change

Geoengineers have a bold new idea in the battle to slow climate change. According to Gizmodo, water vapor trapped 4 to 50 miles above earth acts as a greenhouse gas. Joshua Schwarz, researcher at National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Earth System Research Laboratory, believes that water vapor could be reduced by adding ice-forming nuclei to the atmosphere.

Removing just 3% of the water mass through freezing could have positive global effects. The strategy is in its early stages, and many technical difficulties lie ahead, but there are positive results from models based on NASA research to track the movement of vapor into the upper atmosphere. 

"If we had one magic way to [address climate change] I wouldn't say, oh we shouldn't use it," Schwarz said. "At this point, my feeling is we need more ideas and to explore the implications of the approaches we decided to take…it might be easier to get a mixture of options that's better for the planet and humanity than just one approach.

Schwartz also reassured reporters that this plan won't have an unintended Snowpiercer effect.

"We have confidence that it would be a win… that it wouldn't do anything bad and we know exactly how to do it," Schwarz said.

See also: Eunice Newton Foote: The forgotten scientist who discovered the greenhouse effect in 1856