The Download: Longevity Science Legitimization and Harvard’s Geoengineering Reversal

During a chilly day in December, a group of medical professionals and researchers assembled at a research facility in Novato, California. Their agenda was to devise ways to extend human lifespan and ensure that those added years are spent healthily. However, they were also interested in being recognized as a valid medical field.

The professionals believe that modern medicine has been overly focused on treating illnesses instead of preventing them. They propose a shift from reactive to proactive healthcare. They aim to make this transition credible by establishing “gold standards” and institutes guidelines related to aging. They see themselves as pioneers leading a transformative transition in the field of medicine.

However, they acknowledge the obstacles ahead. There is a lack of consensus among clinicians about how to evaluate and treat aging. Without predefined standards and guidelines, incompetent clinics might not only fail to help their patients but could also inflict harm.

In a different scenario, a long-anticipated atmospheric geoengineering experiment done by Harvard researchers has been put to rest following constant postponements and public disapproval. The core idea of solar geoengineering is to mitigate global warming by dispersing miniature particles in the atmosphere that can diffuse sunlight. Those in favor believe it is necessary to explore the concept due to its potential advantages in combating climate change.

However, the critics believe that simply studying the option of solar geoengineering reduces societal obligation to decrease greenhouse gas emissions. They are also anxious that such researches could lead to a slippery slope where nations or rogue actors might opt to use it, despite the risk of dangerous side effects.