Jeff Haley: Welcome to Reflective Earth
October 6, 2020

Welcome to Reflective Earth!

I’m excited to welcome you to Reflective Earth.

We’ve been working since late last year to launch an exciting new organization focused on the fastest way possible to slow global warming – reflection.  At RE (our shorthand way of referring to ourselves), we love the many meanings of that word.  

Speed is the main reason I launched RE.  I live in Washington State, generally a very “green” state.  Despite overwhelming support for climate action and good political leadership, bending the emissions curve is excruciatingly slow.  Even committed policymakers like our governor (Jay Inslee) take years to build political consensus for significant reduction measures.  

Ultimately, the best solution to global warming is to stop using fossil fuels and to vastly improve our relationships to agriculture and nature.  At Reflective Earth, we support action on both those fronts.  But our central mission at RE is to discover, prototype, and deploy soft and hard technologies that increase Earth’s reflectivity in ways that are socially beneficial, environmentally sound, cost-effective, and can be implemented quickly to fill the gap until use of fossil fuels is over and greenhouse gasses have been removed from the atmosphere.  

There are many ways to increase Earth’s reflectivity that can be deployed at scale today.  And some can be deployed incrementally, so that impacts can be tested before scale-up and can be deployed in a way to have quickest impact at a regional scale where the effects of warming are most severe.  From lighter, brighter roofs to preserving our planet’s ice caps, there’s a whole world of measures to be explored and deployed to reduce the amount of heat the Earth absorbs every day.

That is RE’s work – facilitating all the options available (and those not yet invented) to preserve and grow Earth’s reflectivity.  We hope to do so in three ways:

First, we work to increase surface reflectivity by scaling and accelerating community-based projects (starting with “cool roof” programs).  

Second, we experiment with low risk ways of increasing stratospheric reflectivity.  Among other things, we are prototyping and demonstrating new very large high-altitude reflective balloons to kick-start a range of options for stopping heat before it gets to the surface.

Third, we work to accelerate policy and finance for cost-effective and environmentally benign reflectivity interventions.  Our work here will be on wider dissemination of existing research and new tools for assessing reflectivity programs around the world.

We are inspired by the challenge of stopping global warming before it gets much worse.  At the very least, we hope to live up to our name.  

Please visit often.  Please join us.