Geology news

plastic in sedimentary rocks

Somebody told me about this, as she had been to a geological meeting with her son where they were showing off a sample of plastic in rock. I later put it into my search engine and up popped a number of stories from last year that I had failed to appreciate or the implications involved. I'm still not sure as sedimentary rocks are usually assigned long periods of time in order to accumulate - and we are talking about what sounds like instantaneous accretion (or so it would seem).

a Milankovitch glitch

This story was also in the latest issue of the journal Geology and is interesting as it raises questions about the Milankovitch theory of climate associated with the Ice Ages - see ... which supposes the expansion and contraction of a northern ice sheet is influenced by cyclic fluctuations in solar radiation, inter-acting due to wobbles in the Earth's orbit that restricted sunlight in one hemisphere while the opposite hemisphere brightened.

At last, at last, at last ...

At ... we have 'did a volcanic cataclysm 40,000 years ago, trigger the final demise of the Neanderthals?' - which is a paper just published in the journal Geology, already mentioned I think, in a preview edition, some weeks past, but now in its final format. At last they are mentioning a catastrophic event around 40,000 years ago after years of ignoring it.

a video of the cracking up of the Earth

If you saw the video of the expanding earth scenario some months ago at this space and then you might be interested in the rival, the same thing but with a constant Earth size and a busting apart at the seams as the tectonic plates push pieces of continent around - or roughly as it is thought to have happened. Treat it as a comparison with the expanding earth video - go to

If link doesn't work go to and click on News and then click on the story

more on those mysterious holes appearing in permafrost in Siberia

At ... more on the mysterious craters in Siberia. Global warming is blamed.

Huffington Post - complete with all the scaries and some really weird comments.

Fossil Swim Tracks

At ... we are told the end of Permian mass extinction event may even have wiped out marine worms and other burrowing creatures that make holes in the mud on the bottom of the sea. This appears to be an extinction too far - on the face of it. The researchers came to this conclusion as in the following era, the early part of the Triassic, massive reptiles had evolved, and their tracks are preserved in rocks in modern day Utah.

chalk erratics

An article in February's Down to Earth (geology magazine), issue 90, ISSN 0969-3408 ... concerns discoveries in chalk quarries over the years. Most finds are never reported. It is only the odd quarrymen who will bring attention to an oddity, and inform a geologist. In turn, most academic geologists rely on others to do the dirty work, and in spite of this there are a surprising number of erratics in museum collections (donated over the last 100 or so years).

manganese balls on the ocean bottoms

The mystery of the balls of metals found on the ocean floor are baffling scientists, we are being told at

A remote camera revealed the ocean floor is littered with these metal balls, and some patches are remarkably well spread. Entrepreneurs around the world have an eye on harvesting them - and making lots of dosh in the process.

a canyon created in days

At ... the Joumlkuka Fjoumllum river in the Joumlkuka rgljnafur canyon in Icelkand was formed in a matter of days by extreme flooding events

modern civilisation is a civilisation of oil

Modern civilisation is a civilisation of petroleum. Some people think it is a simple thing to shut off the pumps and close down the pipelines and live on renewables.