Catastrophism news

April earthquake triggers lots of other earthquakes

I've bracketed this under catastrophism as it may link into the earthquake storms between 2300 and 2000BC, and again, in the 12th century BC (conventional dates applied). At Tall Bloke's Talk Shop the subject of earthquakes was inspired following the one off the west coast of Canada this past week, and fears of a tsunami wave striking Hawaii. In the outcome nothing catastrophic happened but it is a good point for Tall Bloke to pick up on the earthquake in April 2012 off India.

1258 again

Again, this probably should be on the forum but for those interested in the purported 1258 volcano that caused a famine that killed lots of people in cities such as London it is bit revealing that earlier this year Michael Mann, infamous for creating a hockey stick by hiding the decline and making use of bristlecone pines that were influenced by snowfall in the high mountains rather than global temperature, had a piece published in Nature Geoscience that perhaps kickstarted all the other articles and possibly even the reason why archaeologists thought a volcano was responsible f

Lakes in the Desert

At ... an interesting story dating back to the Late Glacial Maximum - when the northern ice sheet reached down to the Great Lakes and beyond. At that time there were lakes in what is now the dry states of Utah and Nebraska, such as Bonneville, Lahontan and the Great Salt Lake, and they were really big lakes holding an enormous amount of water.

Quantavolution Conference

Hosted by Alfred de Grazia the annual Quantavolution conference can be accessed at and a transcript of the various speakers, which include Trevor Palmer, William Mullen, Emilio Spedicato and Gunnar Heinsohn. In the transcript of the latter there is some really unusual speculation on the Late Roman Period, including the fact Roman history and archaeology very often revolves around dating via Roman coinage - and the assumed orthodox succession of emperors. What if the consensus was faulty?

The opposition

At ... George Howard decribes the nature of the resistance to the Younger Dryas boundary event hypothesis and what he witnessed at the AMQA conference in 2010. Dennis Cox, in the comments, adds further interesting points - the case of an assumptive consensus versus data driven science and the fact geologists know far less thany they care to admit, about anything to do with the history of the Earth. Data that refute the summptions of the consensus is very often airbrushed away, or archived in a dark room.

Double Whammy

At ... the end of Cretaceous, or K/T boundary event, is associated with an asteroid smashing into Yucatan, killing off the dinosaurs, and now the search is on for evidence of a similar strike at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary

More on the YDFB event paper this week

At ... however, the paper, lead author astrophysicist Malcolm LeCompte, stops short of saying there is positive evidence of a cosmic impact. What they had found, according to LeCompte, is evidence consistent with an impact but it does not yet prove one took place. There is a mystery contained in the Younger Dryas strata - what that is has yet to be established.

The Firestone et al research is vindicated by new paper

At ... and see also ... and of course, ... there is a new paper in PNAS that appears to exonerate the YD boundary event researchers and criticises the scientists too quick to do a write-up with the intention of debunking them.

Expanding glaciers

At ... the events in the Arctic this year, although still impeding Shell's attempts to drill in the sea bed, have given birth to speculation on how fast glaciers respond to climate change - for some reason dropping the word warming. This might be because the Arctic is still very cold and wind was a factor in the break up of the ice this year - which however must necessarily have been very thin ice for that to happen.

Ammonites in Antarctica

We are used to finding ammonites in various places in the UK, such as the collapsed cliffs at Charmouth in Dorset, dating back to the Jurassic. These creatures of warm seas have been studied for years and are part and parcel of the idea that the Dinosaur age was one of global warmth. This appears to be confirmed by the discovery of large ammonites on an island off the peninsular of Antarctica - proof of Jurassic and Cretaceous global warming - see