Ethics of climate engineering: Don’t forget technology has an ethical aspect too

Laurence Brooks, Sara Cannizzaro, S. Umbrello, Michael J. Bernstein, Kathleen Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Climate change may well be the most important issue of the 21st century and the world’s response, in the form of ‘Climate Engineering’, is therefore of equal pre-eminent importance. However, while there are technological challenges, there are equally just as important ethical challenges that these technologies also generate. Governments, funding agencies and non-governmental organisations increasingly recognise the importance of incorporating ethics into the development of emerging technologies (for example, within the EU draft legislation on AI). As the world faces the global challenge of climate change there are urgent efforts to develop strategies so that responses to the climate problems do not reproduce more of the same. Ethical values from the onset are fundamental to this process and need highlighting. Hence, this paper analyses a series of ethical codes, framework and guidelines of the new emerging technologies of climate engineering (CE) through a review of both published academic literature and grey literature from either industry, government, and non-governmental (NGO) organisations. This paper was developed as part of a collaboration with international partners from TechEthos (TechEthos receives funding from the EU H2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 101006249; Ethics of Emerging Technologies), an EU-funded project that deals with the ethics of the new and emerging technologies anticipated to have high socio-economic impact. Our findings have identified the following ethical considerations including autonomy, freedom, integrity, human rights and privacy in the developmental process of climate engineering, while a poverty of ethical values reflecting dignity and trust were noted.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102449
Pages (from-to)1
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Information Management
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


Dive into the research topics of 'Ethics of climate engineering: Don’t forget technology has an ethical aspect too'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this