On the global visual politics of climate engineering


For decades, interventions into the Earth system to prevent the most severe consequences of climate change were the stuff of science fiction novels or computer simulations. Meantime, however, various forms of so-called climate engineering are being seriously discussed in international forums such as the United Nations Environment Programme and the European Commission. Corresponding with this development, images of climate engineering are increasingly circulating in online media to illustrate the nature and potential use of these largely speculative technologies.

IFSH researchers Ann-Kathrin Benner and Dr. Delf Rothe analyzed an extensive array of visual data on climate engineering for their article "World in the Making: On the global visual politics of climate engineering" in the Review of International Studies. In their analysis, they show how images and other visuals do not only shape the dominant understanding of climate engineering but also competing imaginaries of future political orders in which such approaches might be deployed.