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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Mass Extinction

For John, BLUFThere are powerful natural forces out there, determining our fate.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The New York Post and Reporter Ron Hogan 24 June 2017.

Here is the lede:

Most of us know about the asteroid that hit Earth just off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula 65 million years ago and wiped out the dinosaurs, but that’s not the whole story.  Many scientists now believe the 110-mile-wide rock may have been only partially responsible for the mass extinction at the end of the Cretaceous Period, pointing to a volcanic field in modern India that erupted around the same time, flooding the land with hot lava and turning the oceans to acid.  One of the few reasons some birds, the last vestiges of the dinosaur age, were able to survive the slaughter was that they were burrowers who rode out the disaster underground.
Here is the second paragraph:
And that’s only the most recent of Earth’s major life-threatening crises. In his new book, “The Ends of the World:  Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth’s Past Mass Extinctions” (Ecco), science writer Peter Brannen criss-crosses North America to review what we know about the moments when life on our planet was knocked down, only to get back up again.  It’s a story that begins 450 million years ago, at the end of the Ordovician Period, which fell victim to a global warming that caused a 100-foot rise in the sea level, flooding the early continents.
The article then goes on to list other extinction events.

The article concludes:

“You can’t beat [human] culture for resisting all kinds of horrific things,” another scientist tells Brannen, adding that it’s more likely “quality of life is going to go down the tubes” for most people than that we’d actually die out as a species.  It’s even possible that, as the northern hemisphere once again begins losing sunlight, we may be raising the earth’s temperature just enough to save ourselves from a long-overdue ice age.
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

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