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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7 Jun 2011
Eocene - tropical jungles thriving in what are now temperate zones

At www.physorg.com/print226319418.html is a report on a paper in the journal Science (June, 2011) that focuses on the Antarctic Circumpolar Current as a cause of the assumed global cooling 38 million years ago that led to the icing over of the southern continent. Up to this point, it seems, tropical jungle thrived in what is now the US Midwest, and Antarctica was temperate - with large numbers of marsupials. Was it still joined to Australia?

7 Jun 2011
Volcanoes and earthquakes

At www.physorg.com/print226459407.html there is a report on a volcano in Chile that erupted on June 4th. A rift, 6 miles by 3 was torn out of the surface of the earth. The volcano lies 40 miles away from some magnitude 5 earthquakes which may indicate a tectonic origin for the volcano - and the volcano was again active on the 5th and 6th. Piers Corbyn, at www.weatheraction.com/displayarticle.asp?a-350&c=5 has suggested a link with a 10 meV proton burst on the Sun, as well as tornadoes in Massachusetts and Saskatchewan and wild winds in Montreal.

7 Jun 2011
Super Solar Flare

It seems solar flares are in the news as Paul La Violette, in the journal Radiocarbon (June 2011, 53:2 page 303-323) claims a super solar flare was responsible for the Pleistocene extinctions - or those that occurred at the onset of the Younger Dryas event. He says that there was an abrupt rise in atmospheric radiocarbon concentrations in the Cariaco Basin varve record (from lake sediments) at 12.837 years BP (the beginning of the Younger Dryas event).

7 Jun 2011
All things green and wonderful

At http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/6/6/koutsoyiannis-2011.html (or at simply www.bishop-hill.net June 6th) there is an interesting post by Doug Keenan on a paper by Koutsoyiannis which seems to show little empirical evidence of rising global temperatures and that the case supporting AGW rests almost entirely on computer simulation - but everybody knows that already. Basically, IPCC climate scientists make an assumption known as ARI - derived from the statistical concept of 'first order autoregression'.

3 Jun 2011
Decay Rates

An interesting piece at http://arxivblog.com/?p=596 'Do nuclear decay rates depend on our distance from the Sun?' ... is a question that came up in a recent Study Group meeting in London. Decay rates of elements have always been thought to be constant regardless of ambient conditions. However, at the same time it is long known that decay rates can be influenced by powerful electrical fields - and we can all see electricty in the atmosphere in the form of lightning.

3 Jun 2011
The Big Bang dissenter

At www.colorado.edu/philosophy/vstenger/Cosmo/bang.txt is a review of Eric Lerner's book, The Big Bang Never Happened - a refutation of the Dominant Theory of the Origins of the Universe (Random House:1991). The review is somewhat negative and written in the context of defend the consensus at any cost, and damn the radicals, which is amusing really as the review was published in a journal with the hopeful title, The Skeptical Enquirer.

3 Jun 2011
Giant fjords beneath Antarctica

Thiss story can be seen at www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110601134253.htm and is based on a paper in Nature just out. It is also featured, with comments, at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/06/01/radar-mapping-reveals-ancient-anta... which indicates the manner of the research, radar mapping that is able to penetrate thick ice to look at what lies underneath. What they have been looking at is a subglacial basin buried under eastern Antarctica amd this basin, larger than Texas (and therefore larger than Yorkshire) is cut by fjords.

3 Jun 2011
Extinctions

Willis Eschenbach at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/06/01/common-sense-added-to-endangered-s... raises an interesting point. Extinction events in the past have involved lots of dead bodies and fossils in rocks - but where are the dead bodies of the modern AGW induced extinction event?

3 Jun 2011
How old are the Niagara Falls

In Earth in Upheaval , page 139-141, Velikovsky says, that Lake Agassiz, a large glacial lake that once covered the region at present occupied by Lake Winnepeg, Lake Manitoba, and a number of other lakes in Canada as well as part of the North Central States to the south, was formed when the ice sheet melted buts its sediment indicates it had a life of less than a thousand years - before dissipating (presumably by rivers).

2 Jun 2011
The Marlborough Pudding

It has been common knowledge that the pudding shaped mound in the grounds of Marlborough College was probably a smaller version of Silbury Hill. It is now official - see www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/may/31/malborough-mound-wiltshire-silbur... and www.pasthorizons.com/index.php/archives/05/2011/marlborough-mound-a-sibl... and was built in mid third millennium BC. A thousand years ago it became the base of a Norman castle and somewhat later, in the 17th century, was garden landscaped as an oddity.