Governments can’t seem to stop bickering long enough to do anything practical about global warming, so a UK entrepreneur has taken things into his own hands: Richard Branson, the CEO of Virgin Records and Virgin airlines, has offered a $25 million prize to anyone who can come up with a system to removed greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.

In New Scientist, Catherine Brahic reports that the prize will be given for the first person who figures out how to “devise a system to remove a ‘significant amount’ of greenhouse gases?equivalent to 1 billion tons of carbon dioxide or more?every year from the atmosphere for at least a decade.” Capturing power plant emissions before they enter the atmosphere and storing them deep underground doesn’t count, since we already know how to do that (not that we’re doing it). Brahic quotes climatologist Celine Herweijer as saying, “While we should welcome initiatives like this that aim to limit the amount of climate change in the future, we also need more creative solutions to the problems that climate change is already causing.”

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