Concentrating the Mind


David Davis with Michael Winning (beers)

In the last few days, we have had a lot of stuff about volcanoes. Mainly because our old friend, Iceland, has decided to do its normal thing from over the last 40-or-so-million-years, and produce large volumes of asthenosperic materials, for high-level-projection, in short order. Indeed, an even cursory look at geological maps of Iceland will show an even shorter history of eruptions than that.

The Icelanders ought to be our friends. Indeed, those of us who live here in the North West are probably more closely related to them than you can shake a stick at. But today, I thought I would type rapidly, and without too much affore-thought, about modern civilisation, economics, and (you’ve guessed it) climate change. We people of today, in “New Britain, a YOUNG COUNTRY” as the disgusting and over-grasping pig Blair put it, once, have never seen a real volcano. Nor indeed has anyone else alive today, or even whoever has been alive in the last 70,000 years or thereabouts. (We think….)

What would happen to the AGW movement, which sets out to destroy humanity on purpose, and is by way of almost succeeding now, if there was a real volcanic eruption? You knowof what I speak! The kind from a crater the size of Wyoming, and which carries on for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years? If not thousands? They could,and have done in the past. Planets, especially large and massive rocky ones close(ish) to suns, are big objects with a lot of inertia, in respect of the organisms which might cling tenuously to life on their surfaces. It’s fortunate that they’re mostly as big as they are, or we’d have other difficulties too.

Let’s suppose that Yellowstone goes belly-up, tomorrow. The odds are it probably won’t, but it could. Should we apply the “precuationary principles” to such as event, and indeed could we even do so?

Almost immediately, pretty much all the agricultural land of North America will vanish. Along with it, about half the world’s acreage of grain and other plant crops, in productivity terms. Forget the “people” – to GramscoStalinists, people who live in North America are mere dross or statistics. Unless they are Mexicans or “blacks” but that won’t help much as Mexico and New Orleans (where of course Gramscians say all “blacks” live and all are “disadvantaged”) will be under the ash too. The stratospheric dust and ash clouds will persist for years, maybe decades or centuries. No growing-land will be safe anywhere, and billions may die.

At first, GreeNazis will rejoice. Food will still be avilable, at a price, and the metrosexual kinds will eat, for a while. But the planet has about 66 days’ supply of primary foods for humans at any one time. After the “little local shops” have run out first, and the “locavores” have begun to get restive and angry about “failure of government initiatives to ensure supplies for families, workers and young people”, thngs will start to get exciting. People will start to rob for food and to rob food: Police forces, especially in the UK, will start to behave like they have been itching to for years, deploying all the guns they have been hoarding and training with, especially against “terrorists”. The familes of Police will eat tolerably well, for a time….

The sky will be a dark grey colour most of the time, and it will seem very cold, all the time. The sun will not appear to heat the air at all. Yorkshire-sized icebergs, carrying their own microclimates, will travel as far as Tenerife before melting. The Shetlands may have to be abandoned, along with their oil and gas – which will become a prized commodity. No surviving GreeNazis will dare to speak openly of “bio fuels”, for fear of being made to watch their children being lynched and eaten, before they themselves are spitted and roasted over the fire, fed by their children’s uncollected fat. Saudi Arabia might dry up completely and rains there may fail.

A small Ice Age might be triggered. Two or three thousand years, no more than that, if we are lucky: a mere blip on the paleogeological temperature record.

The precautionary Principle suggests to us two here, that we ought to do the following, given the 1,100 trillion tonnes of Oxygen depositied, for our benefit, in today’s atmosphere:-

(1) Burn as much fossil fuels as we can pump, to make concrete and steel to build as many nuclear power stations as we can fill with nuclides, as fast as possible,

(2) Pay the Chindians to mine as much coal as their hearts can spade up, to help same process,

(3) Raise the atmospheric CO2 percentage to about 1% asap (that’s nearly 30 times the present level!), to promote regrowth of plant life as fast as can be managed, given that air temperature /could/ be a limiting factor.

We might, just might, if  we did all this, now, avert a fully-major human disaster, in which billions of people will die. Ought we not to do this for the children? Afeter all, the probability of this is far higher than AGW…

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4 responses to “Concentrating the Mind

  1. Paul Robinson

    Interesting.

    David, I gather you’re a scientist, and will therefore be able to tell me I’m talking nonsense (I do that a lot!), but it seems to me that this great “ash crisis” sheds an interesting light on AGW. We are arrogant enough to think that our puny efforts are sufficient to cause global warming, and yet see how we measure up to the awesome power of nature; one fairly small volcano in Iceland, and European airspace grinds to a halt!

    AGW? Piffle! It’s the Sun wot did it!

  2. You are quite correct, Paul.
    Also, this output is “not much” as geologically-important ash-clouds in the earth’s history go. The only reason they’re shit-scared is that they can’t afford the insurance against their jet-engines being trashed by what amounts to flying-carborundum-powder, and the possible suits from the relatives of dead passengers whose airbuses glided like bricks for a few seconds before stalling fully.

    A few thousand cubic miles of ash, perfectly possible and indeed probable every few million years, will trigger short ice-ages of about a few millennia each. This would have really major climate implications for a population of farmers like we now are, who need to keep the food- tonnages coming or else.

    Yellowstone is about on time to “go up” again, as it’s 600,000 years since the last one, and it seems to “go up” every 600,000 to-700,000 years at present.

  3. Is it possible to do without the neologisms and hating people? This thread reads like a disaster movie. Obviously, the airlines don’t want their planes’ engines to glaze over, and cease to fly. There was a case in Indonesia where a 747 had all four engines shut down, yet it glided to a landing. Amazing.

    Tony

  4. the Eyjafjallajokull (ay-yah-FYAH-lah-yer-kuhl) volcano

    For those of us who wondered how it should be pronounced. Smiles

    Tony