Geology news


At ... some new discoveries on foraminifera, the tiny shells of sea creatures such as plankton that are an important prop of Ice Age theory - and palaeo climate history in general. These shells hold clues about the composition of the sea water they lived in and Science (Nov 22nd) and Biogeoscience (Oct) provide the necessary news. Sediment cores are used to reconstruct prehistoric climate - and in the oceans of the world this involves the innocuous remains of foraminifera (plankton) shells.

Methane in the Arctic Ocean

At ... (the same story is at and has hundreds of comments to wade through) but basically we learn that methane is bubbling up from the East Siberian continental shelf system in the Arctic Ocean (opposte Ellesmere Island and the top of Greenland). This shelf system was dry land in the Pleistocene, according to some geologists, part of the Beringia complex (now drowned). It is thought to harbour the remains of lots of Pleistocene mammals.

The Long Mynd

Changing sea levels, or a reconfiguration of the oceans, are sometimes to be found in the most surprising of places. Anyone holidaying in Shropshire, about as middle of southern Britain as you can get, cannot help but be impressed by such geological formations as The Wrekin or Wenlock Edge. Another interesting feature is the Long Mynd, a very long piece of upland that stands out of the Shropshire plain like a huge boil. It is quite high - enough to be covered in moor like habitat rather than the rich farmland below.

A shorter history of the Greenland ice sheet

We know it was smaller in the Medieval Warm Period otherwise Scandinavian farmers would not have colonised the edges of the ice sheet and therefore it is capable of shrinking and growing, as it did in the Little Ice Age. Now we have a paper in the journal Geology that claims the ice sheet was much smaller between three and five thousand years ago, in the Bronze Age - see

The new island off Japan

At ...


Door to Hell

In this post at ... hell is invoked, a bit of a tabloid 'word-play' on an unusual story. The door to hell is in the desert of Turkmenistan and is a huge man-made crater of fire and boiling mud, a former gas field that has been burning unabated for some 40 years. It has become a tourist attraction,


There be gold and nickel in them there craters

At ... it seems geologists might have a new way to look for gold in them thar' hills - find the crater and then dig out the gold. Geologist Bob Watchorn has finally nailed down a huge impact structure in Australia after years of speculation and investigation. He has calculated that all the gold and nickel fields in Western Australia's 'eastern gold fields' fall on rings picked out by Landsat imaging.

Dinosaur flatulence and global warming

At ... Tim Cullen takes aim again at the Earth Sciences and a Wikipedia entry that claims, 'palaeo-climatology research published in Current Biology suggests that flatulence from dinosaurs may have warmed the Earth'. Was this an entry inserted by one of the CAGW 'thought police' that patrol the corridors of Wikipedia seeking out and deleting anything off message - anything that disagrees with doomsaying and CAGW alarmism.

Patterns in Geology

At ... Tin Cullen gets more and more interesting as he probes down through the uniformitarian minefield of geology. Silicates, according to the consensus view of the late 19th/ early 20th centuries, were thought to have had a gelatinous stage before ripening to become agates, and this involved liesegang rings.


At ... see picture below. This was taken a few weeks ago and shows just what landscape features an earthquake can create - a huge crack in the ground and a wall of rock.