In The News

Welcome to our "In the News" page, featuring summaries of Internet news, relevant to Catastrophism and Ancient History.

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2 Apr 2011
The Grand Canyon ... again

Sparked by the same article as my post on March 31st, EM Smith at asks an intriguing question. The aforesaid article says the Colorado River began cutting out the Grand Canyon 17 million years ago - other geologists have suggested 3 or 6 million years. It is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and up to a mile deep - but where did all the material go that got washed away?

2 Apr 2011
Gravity and the earth ... and the Sun.

Some exciting science at ... GOCE, the Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer, is onboard a satellite launched in 2009 and moves around the earth from pole to pole at an altitude of 255km. It is able to map the very small differences in pull exerted by the mass of the planet from one region to the next - from mountains to ocean trenches. It can calculate gravity at any given point that it observes.

2 Apr 2011

At is a report on a huge midden of the Musqueam people who lived for generations on the estuary of what is now the Fraser River = Vancouver. The mound of shell, animal and fish bones, and general refuse, goes back some 9000 years - it is estimated. This is probably a guess and not an actual scientific date but they appear to have been living in the region since at least 6000BC. Maybe even before that.

2 Apr 2011
Child genius ... no big bang

At ... a twelve year old maths whizzkid has worked out the universe could not have been formed by the Big Bang. Its all to do with carbon.

2 Apr 2011
Buttercups and Dinosaurs

A fossil member of the Ranunculae flowering plant family, which includes buttercups, marsh marigolds and water crowfoot, among others, has been found in volcanic ash beds of an ancient lake in China. The plant, when it was alive, was probably growing in a marsh habitat - or at the least, in moist conditions. It is said to date back 125 million years ago (see ).

1 Apr 2011
North Atlantic Weather

At scientists have been finding out why it is cold in NE America but not in NW Europe at the same latitude (a paper in Nature, March 31st 2001). It is 10 degrees Fahrenheit warmer in NW Europe than it is on the opposite side of the Atlantic. It seems the same thing occurs in the Pacific where winters in the Vancouver and Seattle region are mild in comparison with the same latitude on the eastern side of the ocean.

31 Mar 2011
The Donana Atlantis

The Daily Telegraph of March 15th 2011 had a report on a National Geographic Channel film screened in the US and promoted by Professor Richard Freund. The film and the professor made the claim Atlantis lies beneath the Donana wetlands in Spain - not far from Cadiz. It is a national park famous for its birds and animals but a satellite photograph appeared to reveal what looked like rectangular buildings and concentric circles - and archaeologists have since been digging holes to find out what they were.

31 Mar 2011
The Planet Mercury

NASAs Messenger spacecraft is now in orbit around Mercury and has returned the first image of the planet. Altogether some 360 + images have been taken by NASA and these will be released later in the week. See

31 Mar 2011
Grand Canyon

At is an article 'How Old is the Grand Canyon?' which describes some of the conventional thinking on how long it would take a river to cut through so many layers of rock - and millions of years are involved. However, a whole mountain range has apparently disappeared - over the course of the same period of time. The disappearance is equally as mysterious as the formation of the canyon - a great slash cut out of the crust of the earth. It is also clear that science does not really know how it was formed - but ideas abound.

31 Mar 2011
Mayan agriculture - making use of wetland environments

At anad at the web site of the University of Cincinatti. Researchers have been trying to fathom why the Maya built their bustling cities nexts to what is swampland - especially the boggy zone of Tikal in modern Guatemala. They have discovered that when the Maya built their cities, from the 4th century BC to the 9th century AD, the environment was somewhat different to nowadays.