The risk of ending a solar radiation management program abruptly
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Climate change as a result of anthropogenic activities calls for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to avoid dangerous consequences on society. However, abatement of emission is a costly process and adversely affects the economic growth. Recent proposals, therefore, suggested a different approach i.e. Geoengineering. Instead of controlling emissions, Geoengineering modifies the climate by changing global energy fluxes either by increasing the amount of outgoing infrared radiation through reduction of greenhouse gases (GHGs) or by decreasing the amount of solar radiation falling upon the earth’s surface by increasing the albedo (reflectivity) of the atmosphere. Most popular geoengineering strategies are Air Capture (AC) and Solar Radiation Management (SRM) and many economic studies have shown large net monetary benefits with their application. But, these studies neglected the risks which can arise due to potential failure to sustain SRM after few decade of its deployment. There is a concern that application of SRM will lead to increase in concentration of carbon-dioxide in atmosphere and its abrupt turning off can lead to rise in temperature and thereby huge monetary losses. In this report, consequences of abruptly turning off of SRM have been analyzed. A modified version of DICE (Dynamic Integrated model of Climate and the Economy) model that incorporates negative SRM forcing and a two phase optimization procedure has been used for the study. Different outcomes such as net change in NPV of climate damage and abatement costs, maximum mean temperature of earth surface, increase in temperature, emissions control rate, carbon taxes, etc due to abrupt ending of SRM have been analyzed. Results show that application of SRM with a risk of abrupt turnoff is still more profitable compared to not using it at all.