Earth ChangesS


Divining intervention: The growing popularity of dowsing

© Denver PostStorozuk's custom license tag speaks to his water-witching ways.
Two L-shaped metal rods slowly spin in Greg Storozuk's clenched fists as he gently steps through the grass near Sloan's Lake.

"The answer is already known," he says.

The rods rotate into a wide Y. Beneath bushy brows, Storozuk's blue eyes stare vacantly at the horizon. He stops walking.

"Good flowing drinking water. About four gallons a minute. Pretty close to five. Flowing this direction," he says as the rods rotate into a straight line.

Bizarro Earth

Earthquake Magnitude 5.3 - Central Peru

© US Geological Survey
Saturday, June 06, 2009 at 21:51:13 UTC

Saturday, June 06, 2009 at 04:51:13 PM at epicenter

8.734°S, 74.686°W

63.4 km (39.4 miles)

43 km (26 miles) SSW (203°) from Pucallpa, Peru

210 km (131 miles) NE (51°) from Huanuco, Peru

254 km (158 miles) WSW (242°) from Cruzeiro do Sul, Brazil

455 km (283 miles) NE (35°) from Lima, Peru

Arrow Up

It's Not a Triffid, It's A Six Meter High Fungus

© unknownEven these giant (concrete) mushrooms pale in comparison with the 8 meter high fungi from 400 million years ago
We are used to seeing the occasional large mushroom or toadstool in our garden. I've seen pictures of Macrocybe titans ('titan' means big, like the giant Titan Arum flower from Indonesia) on the internet that seem to be about a meter tall, apparently weighing in at 20 kg.

But a six meter high fungus? We need to go back a few millennium. Scientists in the UK discovered fossilized trees from one of the first forests on earth, dating back nearly 400 million years. These trees emerged from a world of early plants barely a few centimeters tall.

But not everything was small. In this ancient forest near Rhynie in Aberdeenshire, there were what the New Scientist writer James O'Donoghue described last year as 'featureless columns standing up to 8 meters high and a meter wide at the bases'.

Bizarro Earth

Wales: Earthquake hits Port Talbot

A minor earthquake has been felt by a number of homes, police said today.

Concerned residents in south Wales contacted the police shortly before 9pm last night after experiencing lights flickering and a tremor.

The British Geological Survey later confirmed there had been an earthquake with a magnitude of three with an epicentre just over six miles north east of Port Talbot.

A spokeswoman for South Wales Police said: "We had three reports yesterday evening. Members of the public from the Wild Mill and Sarn area of Bridgend reported feeling a tremor.

"The British Geological Survey confirmed an earthquake had occurred 10km northeast of Port Talbot with a magnitude of three."


Search for Air France Flight 447 Reveals Astonishing Pollution of World's Oceans

The most alarming piece of news this week emerged when investigators of the doomed Air France flight 447 announced they had found "floating debris" from the plane crash, but it turned out to be only floating trash in the ocean. This is, all by itself, a disturbing commentary on the pollution of the world's oceans: When investigators can't find a plane crash in the ocean because there's already too much trash floating on the surface, we have a problem with pollution.

It's as if they went out to find a plane crash, but ended up discovering that our oceans look like a train wreck. Had they peeked under the surface of the water, they might have found untreated dry cleaning chemicals from a cruise ship, raw feces from a military vessel and tiny bits of plastic that pose an extreme risk to marine life.

With this, air travel investigators learned an important lesson: Just because debris is floating in the ocean doesn't mean a plane crashed there. It could just mean humans are destroying the planet. While 228 passengers sadly died in a tragic air travel accident, we might all die if we don't stop polluting our fragile ecosystems with endless trash.

Cloud Lightning

Kilauea Volcanic Lightning

© Stephen O'Meara
On May 19th, adventure photographer Stephen O'Meara was monitoring an eruption of the Rabaul volcano in Papua, New Guinea, when something happened that, he says, "I'll remember for a very long time. A storm cloud approached the volcano's 2 km plume, and lightning began to arc between the two." He set up his camera in a secure location and recorded the "awesome and blinding" spectacle.

This isn't the first time lightning has been observed around a volcano. Recent examples include Alaska's Mt. Redoubt, Chile's Chaitin volcano and Kilauea in Hawaii. Clouds of water vapor shoot out of these volcanoes in a dusty mixture likened to a "dirty thunderstorm," and lightning emerges from within the turbulent plume.


Strangle Skeptics in Bed! Romm's Climate Progress features threat to skeptics!

A comment on Joe Romm's Climate Progress blog threatens physical harm to those skeptical of man-made climate fears. The June 5, 2009 comment, posted at 3:01 PM, under the name "Creative Greenius" warns any dissenters from man-made global warming fears that "an entire generation that will soon be ready to strangle you and your kind while you sleep in your beds." A man named Joe Galliani appears to be the man behind the comments and the Creative Greenius website.

Romm, a former Clinton Administration official, touts New York Times columnist Tom Friedman praising Climate Progress as an "indispensable blog." Romm was also named by U.S. News and World Report as one of the "top 8 Washington players on energy and the environment" and dubbed an "Influential Liberal Climate Change Expert" by the magazine. Romm also debated Climate Depot's Executive Editor Marc Morano on Roll Call TV about global warming and energy policy. ( See: Morano debates former Clinton Official Romm - April 6, 2009 )

This latest threat made against skeptics comes just days after the influential website Talking Points Memo prominently featured a public call "to jail or execute global warming deniers."

The full post of the Climate Progress comment is reproduced below. Climate Depot has also captured a screen shot of the comments in case they rapidly disappear like the Talking Point Memo article.


Talking Points Memo (Almost) Obliterates Skeptic Executioner

Earlier this week our Climate Depot pal Marc Morano caught an anonymous blogger for Talking Points Memo, who calls himself (or herself) "The Insolent Braggart" (with the URL extension "crazedandconfused"), with a post that called for the jailing or execution of "global warming deniers."

The post's entire text:
At what point do we jail or execute global warming deniers

June 2, 2009, 9:42PM

What is so frustrating about these fools is that they are the politicians and greedy bastards who don't want a cut in their profits who use bogus science or the lowest scientists in the gene pool who will distort data for a few bucks. The vast majority of the scientific minds in the World agree and understand it's a very serious problem that can do an untold amount of damage to life on Earth.

So when the right wing f***tards have caused it to be too late to fix the problem, and we start seeing the devastating consequences and we start seeing end of the World type events - how will we punish those responsible. It will be too late. So shouldn't we start punishing them now?


'Execute' Skeptics! Shock Call To Action: 'At what point do we jail or execute global warming deniers' -- 'Shouldn't we start punishing them now?'

A public appeal has been issued by an influential U.S. website asking: "At what point do we jail or execute global warming deniers." The appeal appeared on Talking Points Memo, an often cited website that helps set the agenda for the political Left in the U.S. The anonymous posting, dated June 2, 2009, referred to dissenters of man-made global warming fears as "greedy bastards" who use "bogus science or the lowest scientists in the gene pool" to "distort data."

The Talking Points Memo article continues:
"So when the right wing fucktards have caused it to be too late to fix the problem, and we start seeing the devastating consequences and we start seeing end of the World type events - how will we punish those responsible. It will be too late. So shouldn't we start punishing them now?"
The article also claims the "vast majority" of scientists agree that man-made warming "can do an untold amount of damage to life on Earth."

The full text of the Talking Points Memo is reproduced below:

(Note: The entry is posted under the anonymous byline "The Insolent Braggart")

Cloud Lightning

US: Powerful storms hit Oregon

Oregon thunderstorm June 2009
© unknown
Intense thunderstorms pounded Central and Western Oregon Thursday, toppling trees and knocking out power, but apparently causing no serious injuries.

The storms began early in the afternoon and moved north toward Portland, which saw strong winds, heavy rain and a lightning show at rush hour. Several cities saw golf-ball sized hail and there were unconfirmed reports of funnel clouds and tornado activity.

The National Weather Service lifted a severe thunderstorm watch early Thursday evening. The watch was expected to stay in effect until 9 p.m., but the storms were quicker than expected.

Power outages were reported across the storm area. Portland General Electric said about 50,000 of its customers had no lights as of 6 p.m. The utility said the hardest-hit areas were in Salem, Silverton, Woodburn, West Linn and Oregon City.

Temperatures were in the mid-70s in the Willamette Valley when the storm hit, but quickly dropped into the lower 60s. Dan Keirns, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Portland, said the storm was the type usually seen midsummer, not late spring.