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David Keith

21 Podcast Episodes

Latest 6 Nov 2021 | Updated Daily

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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229 Systems Failure: With the climate crisis hitting poor people hardest, David Keith says now is the time to explore solar geoengineering


About the “Systems Failure” Series:To kick off the fall 2021 season, we’re launching a mini-series of episodes built around a theme we’re calling “Systems Failure.” Our conversations will focus on how the economic, technological, and other systems that play a vital role in determining how we live our lives can not only treat individuals and groups of people unequally, but can also exacerbate inequality more generally in society. We’ll also talk about strategies to change those systems to make them more equitable.Episode Notes:David Keith has worked near the interface between climate science, energy technology, and public policy for twenty five years. He took first prize in Canada's national physics prize exam, won MIT's prize for excellence in experimental physics, and was one of TIME magazine's Heroes of the Environment. Best known for work on solar geoengineering, David’s analytical work has ranged from the climatic impacts of large-scale wind power to an early critique of the prospects for hydrogen fuel. David is Professor of Applied Physics in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Professor of Public Policy in the Harvard Kennedy School. He spends about a third of his time in Calgary, Canada where he helps lead Carbon Engineering, a company developing technology to capture CO2 from ambient air.PolicyCast is a production of Harvard Kennedy School and is hosted by Staff Writer and Producer Ralph RanalliPolicyCast is co-produced by Susan Hughes.For more information please visit our web page or contact us at PolicyCast@hks.harvard.edu.


2 Nov 2021

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Nuclear Energy: What are the real risks? with David Keith

Climate Now

Despite being a reliable, zero-emissions alternative to energy derived from fossil fuels, nuclear energy remains mired in controversy.Opponents often cite four reasons not to include nuclear in the portfolio of alternative energy sources that will replace fossil fuels: its cost, what to do with radioactive waste, the increased risk of nuclear weapons proliferation, and environment and health impacts resulting from accidents or meltdowns.But how are these risks quantified and how do they compare to other energy sources, including carbon-intensive energy? As the climate crisis worsens, can we really afford to exclude nuclear from the list of solutions?Dr. David Keith, internationally-recognized climate and energy scientist and entrepreneur out of Harvard University, helps us understand how the risks of employing nuclear compare to the risks of not using it.


27 Aug 2021

Similar People

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Professor David Keith | Hacking The Climate

Shaping The Future - Climate Change discussion hosted by Nick Breeze

This was recorded as a collaboration between my podcast Shaping The Future, Cambridge Zero and the Cambridge Festival. Below is more information. Includes excerpt with Dr Rowan Williams, Former Archbishop of Canterbury, on his thoughts on geoengineering research. New Patreon Page: You can now support this channel via Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/genncc - Patreon backers will access content earlier and much more of it. For more information on the podcast visit: https://climateseries.com/climate-change-podcast Topic: Professor David Keith speaks about why solar geoengineering must be researched to see if it can secure a safe climate of 1.5ºC as a high-value benefit to humanity. David Keith: David Keith is the foremost expert on solar geoengineering in the world having been involved in research for over 30 years. As well as being an adviser to Bill Gates, he is also on the Scope Ex team that is planning to carry out preliminary research this year to test the viability of aerosol particle injection into the stratosphere to cool the Earth. This research has attracted widespread criticism from many prominent environmentalists and activists who say the unknown risks of geoengineering are too great. In this interview with climate journalist, Nick Breeze, Keith counters claims that are presented and places solar geoengineering in the context of emissions reduction and carbon dioxide removal as a viable pathway to stabilising the climate. DK: ”Carbon dioxide removal looks easier because people aren't looking seriously at who pays and what the environmental consequences are. I think now we will be starting to look at what deep emissions cuts look like, we will begin to see how hard it is going to be... Carbon Dioxide Removal is not there yet, it is not happening at large scale so it is easy to imagine this technological thing that allows us to do something in the future helps. I think the moral hazard is absolutely real." DK: ”Solar geoengineering could be effective if you put reflective aerosols in the upper atmosphere. If it was ever done, it ought to be done in a way that was very even, north to south, south to west and technically that is doable... The evidence from all climate models and from other analogues is that if one did it in combination with emissions cuts that the climate risk could be reduced in ways that they could not be reduced by emissions cuts alone." DK: ”We could, with solar geoengineering, keep temperatures under 1.5ºC with confidence and we could prevent the loss of the major ice sheets and keep the Arctic more the way it is. I think that is pretty high-value thing!"


4 Apr 2021

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Engineering the Atmosphere - Dr. David Keith, Harvard

Demystifying Science

What if the day comes that humans need to make massive, intentional changes to the earth in order to ensure the survival of the species? Perhaps the solar radiation from the sun increases, or the orbits of the planets shift, or greenhouse gases accumulate to fatal levels. These changes could result in the kind of intense warming that happened during the cretaceous, when palm frond and freshwater ferns dominated the polar landscapes. According to some, the best strategy for avoiding this kind of cataclysmic change is to, quite literally, block out the sun.  It sounds risky, pre-apocalyptic, and almost hubristic. Who are these humans who think on a planetary scale, and refuse to turn away from the challenge of engineering the atmosphere? Our guest today, Harvard professor Dr. David Keith, is an illustrative example of the field. While he studies what sorts of interventions could be used to turn down the intensity of incident solar radiation, in the next breath he’ll be the first to suggest that perhaps spraying sulfuric acid, aluminum, titanium, or diamond dust into the atmosphere isn’t a very good idea.   Our conversation covers all aspects of solar geoengineering. The state of the field, the incentives for developing systems that can change global climates, the likelihood of private actors taking matters into their own hands, and much more.   Subscribe & like so we can keep bringing the best conversations!!!  More readings from us: https://demystifyingscience.com/blog Join the DemystifyingScience mailing list:  http://eepurl.com/gRUCZL Let's talk!  @DemystifySci Twitter: https://twitter.com/demystifysciInstagram: https://www.instagram.com/demystifysciFacebook:https://www.facebook.com/demystifysci~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Music: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Shilo Delay:  https://soundcloud.com/laterisgone--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/demystifying-science/support


15 Nov 2020

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Daniel Schrag and David Keith: Can solar geoengineering help fight climate change?

Ask a Harvard Professor

Climate change may be the hardest problem the human race has ever confronted. In a single century, humans have set in motion events that will unfold on a geological timescale, ultimately redrawing coastlines around the globe as ice sheets melt and sea level rises. Can humanity agree to meet its energy needs with renewables such as wind and solar power? Is there a threshold beyond which the effects of greenhouse gases will become irreversible? Can solar geoengineering help stop this runaway train?  In this episode, Daniel Schrag, director of the Harvard University Center for the Environment and Sturgis Hooper professor of geology and professor of environmental science and engineering, and David Keith, the Gordon McKay professor of applied physics in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School discuss the ramifications of climate change and an engineered response.For more information about Harvard Magazine and this podcast, visit www.harvardmagazine.com/podcast and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.For a transcript of this episode, go to https://harvardmagazine.com/podcast/2020/daniel-schrag-and-david-keithAsk a Harvard Professor is hosted by Jonathan Shaw, Marina Bolotnikova, Jacob Sweet, and produced by Jacob Sweet and Niko Yaitanes. Our theme music was composed by Louis Weeks.


19 Oct 2020

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Reflecting on Solar Geoengineering, with David Keith

Resources Radio

This week, host Daniel Raimi talks with Harvard University Professor David Keith about solar geoengineering. Keith describes the variety of ways that solar geoengineering could work; some of its risks at local, regional, and global scales; recent small-scale experiments; and what might be needed to deploy a larger-scale research program. Raimi and Keith also discuss public policies related to potential deployment technologies, including the substantial issues surrounding governance and geopolitics.References and recommendations:"Inner Ranges" by Geoff Powter; https://rmbooks.com/book/inner-ranges/"Pilgrims of the Vertical" by Joseph E. Taylor III; https://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674052871"Environmental Insights" podcast with Robert Stavins; https://scholar.harvard.edu/stavins/environmental-insights-podcast


12 May 2020

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Episode 7 - Dr. David Keith, Clay County Public Health Medical Director

Spencer Weekly

This one's a timely episode. Dr. David Keith, Clay County Public Health Medical Director, joined our hosts to discuss COVID-19, how the disease is affecting and will continue to affect Clay County, why testing is key — and how he plays video games to handle stress.Read more COVID-19 news for Spencer and Clay County at spencersignal.com/covid19.Support the show (https://spencersignal.com/support-the-spencer-signal/)


1 May 2020

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The potential promises and pitfalls of solar geoengineering: A conversation with David Keith

Environmental Insights: Conversations on policy and practice from the Harvard Environmental Economics Program

Professor Robert Stavins interviews David Keith, Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and Professor of Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School, considered one of the world's leading scholars on solar geoengineering.


7 Feb 2020

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Ep 79: David Keith, Professor at Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Kennedy School, and Founder of Carbon Engineering

My Climate Journey

Today’s guest is David Keith, Professor at Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Kennedy School, and Founder of Carbon Engineering.David has worked near the interface between climate science, energy technology, and public policy for twenty-five years. He took first prize in Canada's national physics prize exam, won MIT's prize for excellence in experimental physics, and was one of TIME magazine's Heroes of the Environment. David is Professor of Applied Physics at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, and founder of Carbon Engineering, a company developing technology to capture CO2 from ambient air to make carbon-neutral hydrocarbon fuels. Best known for his work on the science, technology, and public policy of solar geoengineering, David led the development of Harvard’s Solar Geoengineering Research Program, a Harvard-wide interfaculty research initiative. His work has ranged from the climatic impacts of large-scale wind power to an early critique of the prospects for hydrogen fuel. David’s hardware engineering projects include the first interferometer for atoms, a high-accuracy infrared spectrometer for NASA's ER-2, and currently, the development of pilot plants for Carbon Engineering and the development of a stratospheric propelled balloon experiment for solar geoengineering. David teaches courses on Science and Technology Policy and on Energy and Environmental Systems where he has reached students worldwide with an online edX course. He has writing for the public with A Case for Climate Engineeringfrom MIT Press. Based in Cambridge, David spends about a third of his time in Canmore, Alberta.In today’s episode, we cover:Overview of solar geoengineeringHow concentrated an area can it be deployed inSteps that go into testing it'History of solar geoengineeringPotential risks of deployment and potential risks of not doing the testingPotential for unintended consequencesHow hard it is to deployHow much research is needed (and for what) and how much it will costBridge versus longterm solutionWhere it fits into overall climate solutions portfolioWhat fossil fuel companies think of solar geoengineeringDavid’s advice for others looking to help facilitate research in this area and/or learn more about itLinks to topics discussed in this episode:David Keith: https://keith.seas.harvard.edu/people/david-keithGeoengineering: https://geoengineering.environment.harvard.edu/geoengineeringThe Planet Remade: https://www.amazon.com/Planet-Remade-Geoengineering-Could-Change-ebook/dp/B011PWUT8YCarnegie Climate Governance Initiative: https://www.c2g2.net/Vaclav Smil: http://vaclavsmil.com/Holly Buck: https://www.ioes.ucla.edu/person/holly-buck/Additional Reading:David Keith, “Let’s Talk About Geoengineering,” Project Syndicate, March 21, 2019.David Keith, “Toward a Responsible Solar Geoengineering Research Program,” Issues in Science and Technology, Spring 2017.James Temple, “What is Geoengineering—And Why Should You Care?” MIT Technology Review, August 9, 2019.Lizzie Burns, David Keith, Peter Irvine, and Joshua Horton, “Belfer Technology Factsheet Series: Solar Geoengineering,” Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Technology and Public Purpose Project, June 2019.Jon Gertner, “Is It O.K. to Tinker With the Environment to Fight Climate Change?,” The New York Times Magazine, April 18, 2017.You can find me on twitter @jjacobs22 or @mcjpod and email at info@myclimatejourney.co, where I encourage you to share your feedback on episodes and suggestions for future topics or guests.Enjoy the show!

1hr 5mins

6 Feb 2020

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Out of Thin Air: Clean Fuel for Heavy Transportation and Industry—David Keith—Carbon Engineering

Finding Genius Podcast

Most of us are aware that we’re in the midst of an energy and environmental crisis, two problems for which a number of efforts are being deployed in an attempt to find a solution. For example, solar panels are commonplace, and various efforts are being made to capture CO2 from the atmosphere in order to limit its detrimental effects on the environment and human health. Neither of these efforts, however, are able to meet the high-energy needs of heavy transportation such as airplanes and other freight modes, as well as some industrial equipment. So, what do we need to do? According to David Keith, chief scientist and founder of Carbon Engineering, we need a method for taking carbon free energy from solar power and turning it into fuel which is transportable, storable, has a high energy density, and can be compatible with existing infrastructure. This is exactly what he’s working on, and he’s accomplishing it by taking solar power and combining it with CO2 from the atmosphere. It is from this method that the synthesis of fuels that are chemically the same as existing fuels such as gasoline, diesel, and kerosene is made possible, and it’s all being done cleanly, without exploiting fossil fuels. Tune in to hear Keith explain the ins and outs of what his company is establishing, and the promise it may hold for the future. Learn more by visiting carbonengineering.com


25 Sep 2019