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Cameron Roberts

Postdoctoral Researcher

Nelson Institute | Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment

Hometown: Toronto, Ontario

I apply the history of technology to present-day and future questions about low-carbon transitions. At UW Madison, I am using historical research on the chemical industry, hydroelectricity, soil amendments, pipelines, and mining to investigate the feasibility of various carbon dioxide removal and solar radiation management technologies, which are collectively known as geoengineering.


A Scientific, Economic, and Political Introduction to Geoengineering

We aren’t doing very well at reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. Some people have suggested that that means it’s time for Plan B: A range of mad science schemes to pull carbon from the atmosphere, or even to cool the planet by blocking sunlight. These ideas range from planting trees to giant mirrors in space. All of them are very difficult. What does the history of big technological projects say about how these ideas might play out in real life?