‘If there was any doubt about the terrible threat that global warming poses to humanity, then it can now be dismissed – as this shocking photograph proves that climate change is turning icebergs into giant penises.
The cockberg was photographed by Andy Rouse* in the Bransfield Strait near Antarctica.
Experts now believe** that it is only a matter of time before an armada of penis-shaped chunks begin to break off the Antarctic ice floes, and then roam the oceans wreaking havoc and luring sailors to their doom.’
‘Climate models predicted it wouldn’t happen until the end of the century.
So Seattle researchers were stunned to discover that vast swaths of acidified sea water are already showing up along the Pacific Coast as carbon dioxide from power plants, cars and factories mixes into the ocean.
In surveys from Vancouver Island to the tip of Baja California, the scientists found the first evidence that large amounts of corrosive water are reaching the continental shelf — the shallow sea margin where most marine creatures live. In some places, including Northern California, the acidified water was as little as four miles from shore.
“What we found … was truly astonishing,” said oceanographer Richard Feely, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle. “This means ocean acidification may be seriously impacting marine life on the continental shelf right now.”‘
‘Welcome to LHCountdown.com, this site is primarily a countdown site to the activation of the Large Hadron Collider but is also a hub collecting all articles relating to and about the LHC.’
.. It’s a bit late in the game to find a counter now. There’s only 14 hours to go.
Still, that’s 14 hours of waiting for the LHC to destroy us all with a blackhole. So I can pretend it’s a doomsday clock.
‘First, the bad news: the inner solar system is unstable. Given enough time, Jupiter’s gravity could yank Mercury out of its present orbit.
Two new computer simulations of long-term planetary motion — one by Jacques Laskar (Paris Observatory), the other by Konstantin Batygin and Gregory Laughlin (University of California, Santa Cruz) — have both reached the same disturbing conclusion.
Says Laughlin, “The solar system isn’t as stable as we’d thought.” Both teams have found that Jupiter’s gravity can increase Mercury’s orbital eccentricity over time. Mercury’s path around the Sun is already nearly as elliptical as Pluto’s. But Jupiter can make Mercury’s orbit so out of round that it overlaps the path of Venus. A close encounter between them could send the innermost planet careening off wildly.
“Once Mercury crosses Venus’s orbit,” Laughlin says, “Mercury is in serious trouble.”
So is Earth.’
‘A 13-year-old German schoolboy corrected NASA’s estimates on the chances of an asteroid colliding with Earth, a German newspaper reported Tuesday, after spotting the boffins had miscalculated.
Nico Marquardt used telescopic findings from the Institute of Astrophysics in Potsdam (AIP) to calculate that there was a 1 in 450 chance that the Apophis asteroid will collide with Earth, the Potsdamer Neuerster Nachrichten reported.
NASA had previously estimated the chances at only 1 in 45,000 but told its sister organisation, the European Space Agency (ESA), that the young whizzkid had got it right. [..]
Both NASA and Marquardt agree that if the asteroid does collide with earth, it will create a ball of iron and iridium 320 metres (1049 feet) wide and weighing 200 billion tonnes, which will crash into the Atlantic Ocean.
The shockwaves from that would create huge tsunami waves, destroying both coastlines and inland areas, whilst creating a thick cloud of dust that would darken the skies indefinitely.’
Followup to The Asteroid Threat is Out There.
‘America’s mortgage crisis has spiralled into “the largest financial shock since the Great Depression” and there is now a one-in-four chance of a full-blown global recession over the next 12 months, the International Monetary Fund warned today.
The US is already sliding into what the IMF predicts will be a “mild recession” but there is mounting pessimism about the ability of the rest of the world to escape unscathed, the IMF said in its twice-yearly World Economic Outlook. Britain is particularly vulnerable, it warned, as it slashed its growth targets for both the US and the UK.
The report made it clear that there will be no early resolution to the global financial crisis.
“The financial shock that erupted in August 2007, as the US sub-prime mortgage market was derailed by the reversal of the housing boom, has spread quickly and unpredictably to inflict extensive damage on markets and institutions at the heart of the financial system,” it said.’
‘The task of cutting greenhouse gas emissions enough to avert a dangerous rise in global temperatures may be far more difficult than previous research suggested, say scientists who have just published studies indicating that it would require the world to cease carbon emissions altogether within a matter of decades.
Their findings, published in separate journals over the past few weeks, suggest that both industrialized and developing nations must wean themselves off fossil fuels by as early as mid-century in order to prevent warming that could change precipitation patterns and dry up sources of water worldwide.
Using advanced computer models to factor in deep-sea warming and other aspects of the carbon cycle that naturally creates and removes carbon dioxide (CO2), the scientists, from countries including the United States, Canada and Germany, are delivering a simple message: The world must bring carbon emissions down to near zero to keep temperatures from rising further.’
‘An international research team has provided the first scientific evidence that deadly emerging diseases have risen steeply across the world, and has mapped the outbreaks’ main sources. They say new diseases originating from wild animals in poor nations are the greatest threat to humans. Expansion of humans into shrinking pockets of biodiversity and resulting contacts with wildlife are the reason, they say. Meanwhile, richer nations are nursing other outbreaks, including multidrug-resistant pathogen strains, through overuse of antibiotics, centralized food processing and other technologies. The study appears in the Feb. 21 issue of the leading scientific journal Nature.
Emerging diseases–defined as newly identified pathogens, or old ones moving to new regions–have caused devastating outbreaks already. The HIV/AIDS pandemic, thought to have started from human contact with chimps, has led to over 65 million infections; recent outbreaks of SARS originating in Chinese bats have cost up to $100 billion. Outbreaks like the exotic African Ebola virus have been small, but deadly.’
‘Are we running out of helium? Lee Sobotka, professor of chemistry and physics at Washington University in St. Louis, says it is being depleted so rapidly in the world’s largest reserve, outside of Amarillo, Tex., that supplies are expected to be gone there within the next eight years.
The helium we have on earth is not readily renewable, it has been built up over billions of years from the decay of natural uranium and thorium. The decay of these elements proceeds at a super-snail’s pace.
It will impact more than balloons and kids’ voices, Sobotka says. “Helium’s use in science is extremely broad but its most important use is as a coolant. Helium is non-renewable and irreplaceable. Its properties are unique and unlike hydrocarbon fuels (natural gas or oil), there are no biosynthetic ways to make an alternative to helium. All should make better efforts to recycle it.”‘
‘Dwan Ev ceremoniously soldered the final connection with gold. The eyes of a dozen television cameras watched him and the subether bore throughout the universe a dozen pictures of what he was doing.
He straightened and nodded to Dwar Reyn, then moved to a position beside the switch that would complete the contact when he threw it. The switch that would connect, all at once, all of the monster computing machines of all the populated planets in the universe — ninety-six billion planets — into the supercircuit that would connect them all into one supercalculator, one cybernetics machine that would combine all the knowledge of all the galaxies.
Dwar Reyn spoke briefly to the watching and listening trillions. Then after a moment’s silence he said, “Now, Dwar Ev.”
Dwar Ev threw the switch. There was a mighty hum, the surge of power from ninety-six billion planets. Lights flashed and quieted along the miles-long panel.
Dwar Ev stepped back and drew a deep breath. “The honor of asking the first question is yours, Dwar Reyn.” [..]‘
‘Scientists have identified an asteroid that has a faint chance of ploughing into the Earth, leaving a two-kilometre-wide crater and wiping out life for 6000 square kilometres.
The asteroid measures 130 metres across and is travelling at 70,000 km/h. It would cause huge devastation if it hit the planet.
Called 2007 VK184, the space rock is 90 million kilometres from Earth and could hit in 2048. It has earned a rare hazard rating of “one” on the Torino scale, the international barometer of space object impact risk.’
‘The UK, the United States and Canada are facing growing fears over a drug-resistant ‘superbug’ being brought back by wounded soldiers from Afghanistan and Iraq that threatens to contaminate civilian hospitals.
The intensified concern comes amid sharply rising infection rates in the US and fresh worries in Canada that the bug could be imported into its civilian healthcare system. Military health officials who have studied the bacterium in Afghanistan believe the infection of wounded British soldiers in field hospitals there is probably inevitable. [..]
The bacterium, Acinetobacter baumannii, first emerged as a ‘mystery infection’ afflicting US service personnel returning from the war in Iraq in 2003-04. It was described by a scientific journal specialising in hospital epidemiology as the ‘most important emerging hospital-acquired pathogen worldwide’. The journal added that it was potentially a ‘major threat to public health’ due to its ability to mutate rapidly and develop a resistance to all known drugs.’
‘The Storm worm first appeared at the beginning of the year, hiding in e-mail attachments with the subject line: “230 dead as storm batters Europe.” Those who opened the attachment became infected, their computers joining an ever-growing botnet.
Although it’s most commonly called a worm, Storm is really more: a worm, a Trojan horse and a bot all rolled into one. It’s also the most successful example we have of a new breed of worm, and I’ve seen estimates that between 1 million and 50 million computers have been infected worldwide. [..]
Worms like Storm are written by hackers looking for profit, and they’re different. These worms spread more subtly, without making noise. Symptoms don’t appear immediately, and an infected computer can sit dormant for a long time. If it were a disease, it would be more like syphilis, whose symptoms may be mild or disappear altogether, but which will eventually come back years later and eat your brain.’
‘Researchers who launched an experimental cyber attack caused a generator to self-destruct, alarming the government and electrical industry about what might happen if such an attack were carried out on a larger scale, CNN has learned. [..]
Sources familiar with the experiment said the same attack scenario could be used against huge generators that produce the country’s electric power.
Some experts fear bigger, coordinated attacks could cause widespread damage to electric infrastructure that could take months to fix. [..]
In a previously classified video of the test CNN obtained, the generator shakes and smokes, and then stops.
DHS acknowledged the experiment involved controlled hacking into a replica of a power plant’s control system. Sources familiar with the test said researchers changed the operating cycle of the generator, sending it out of control.’
A list of hundreds of hoaxes that have been perpetrated throughout history.
‘Sergei Zimov bends down, picks up a handful of treacly mud and holds it up to his nose. It smells like a cow pat, but he knows better.
“It smells like mammoth dung,” he says.
This is more than just another symptom of global warming.
For millennia, layers of animal waste and other organic matter left behind by the creatures that used to roam the Arctic tundra have been sealed inside the frozen permafrost. Now climate change is thawing the permafrost and lifting this prehistoric ooze from suspended animation.
But Zimov, a scientist who for almost 30 years has studied climate change in Russia’s Arctic, believes that as this organic matter becomes exposed to the air it will accelerate global warming faster than even some of the most pessimistic forecasts.’
‘On October 8th, 1871, the small Wisconsin logging town of Peshtigo was consumed by one of the most severe and woefully under-reported fires in human history.
After a hot and dry year, with a mere two inches of rain falling from July through September, churchgoers were praying for much-needed precipitation. The creeks had dried up, and the Peshtigo River, which many residents relied upon for transportation and water, was dangerously low.
In the midst of that quiet Sunday evening, the tiny township was totally annihilated – charred by a gigantic fire that engulfed the buildings, the countryside, and even the townsfolk themselves. Even today the little-known blaze holds the distinction of being the deadliest fire ever to occur in the US.’
‘In 2005, the last time the American Society of Civil Engineers rated America’s infrastructure, bridges received a “C” grade; dams earned a “D.”
Even that rating may be generous, a Monitor analysis of dam-inspection data shows. Since 1999, the number of “high-hazard” dams rated “deficient” has more than doubled, according to data from the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO) in Lexington, Ky. High-hazard dams are those whose failures could cause fatalities. In 1999, the US had 546 such dams rated deficient. By last year, it had 1,333.
A second category of “significant-hazard” dams (so-called because they threaten substantial property loss) saw a rise from 339 to 949 deficient dams over the same period. In all, 2.6 percent of the nation’s dams are deficient, according to the ASDSO.’
‘A service offering a complete “revenge package” in which people can destroy the financial status and relationships of their enemies at the click of a mouse is being offered over the internet.
For as little as £10 a month, customers of the confidentialaccess.com website can make the credit ratings of people they dislike plummet and even have them suspected of fraud.
Their bank accounts can be shut down remotely and all their essential utilities cut off.
Fake e-mails and text messages which purport to come from someone else, such as the victim’s spouse, can be sent containing false accusations of affairs or sexual liaisons.
The new “revenge” services are the latest example of the harm the internet can cause individuals. ‘
‘”Have you ever been through the Denver airport? It’s strange. It’s one of the busiest, but I’m telling you, it’s weird. There’s a firestorm of people talking about this thing.”
Especially on June 11, when George Noory devotes all four hours of Coast to Coast, his nationally syndicated talk-radio program dedicated to the “paranormal, extraterrestrial and other topics typically overlooked by more mainstream media outlets,” to a discussion of Denver International Airport. Broadcast on more than 500 affiliate stations, including KHOW, the popular overnight show is the 60 Minutes of conspiracy theories, often with self-educated experts expounding on such subjects as the occult, psychic visions, crop circles, Skull and Bones and apocalyptic predictions. And almost all of these conspiracies intersect at DIA.’
‘About 40 percent of deaths worldwide are caused by water, air and soil pollution, concludes a Cornell researcher. Such environmental degradation, coupled with the growth in world population, are major causes behind the rapid increase in human diseases, which the World Health Organization has recently reported. Both factors contribute to the malnourishment and disease susceptibility of 3.7 billion people, he says. [..]
“We have serious environmental resource problems of water, land and energy, and these are now coming to bear on food production, malnutrition and the incidence of diseases,” said Pimentel.’
‘President George W. Bush is the 43rd President of the United States. He was sworn in for a second term on January 20, 2005 after being chosen by the majority of citizens in America to be president.
Yet in 2007 he is generally despised, with many citizens of Western civilization expressing contempt for his person and his policies, sentiments which now abound on the Internet. This rage at President Bush is an inevitable result of the system of government demanded by the people, which is Democracy. [..]
The wisest course would have been for President Bush to use his nuclear weapons to slaughter Iraqis until they complied with his demands, or until they were all dead. Then there would be little risk or expense and no American army would be left exposed. But if he did this, his cowardly electorate would have instantly ended his term of office, if not his freedom or his life.’
‘The Chinese government has begun a concerted campaign of economic threats against the United States, hinting that it may liquidate its vast holding of US Treasury
Two Chinese officials at leading Communist Party bodies have given interviews in recent days warning, for the first time, that Beijing may use its $1,330bn (£658bn) of foreign reserves as a political weapon to counter pressure from the US Congress. Shifts in Chinese policy are often announced through key think tanks and academies.
Described as China’s “nuclear option” in the state media, such action could trigger a dollar crash at a time when the US currency is breaking down through historic support levels.’
‘President Bush is worried about a new threat to America and is asking congress to approve a $50 billion defense supplemental. They are after your children!’
(5.3meg Flash video)
see it here »
‘Emissions from office laser printers can be as unhealthy as cigarette smoke, according to an Australian professor who is now calling for regulations to limit printer emissions.
Office workers breathing easy since smoking was banned in public places in the United States and the United Kingdom have new reason to worry, according to research from the Queensland University of Technology’s Air Quality and Health Program, led by physics professor Lidia Morawska.
The average printer releases toner particles that can get deep into the lungs and cause respiratory problems and cardiovascular trouble, according to Morawska’s team, part of the International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health, and specialists in atmospheric particles.
The team tested 62 laser printer models–all relatively new–and found that 17 of them were “high emitters” of toner particles. Despite using similar technology, office photocopiers do not emit particles, the team found. ‘
‘Remember the mammoths, say the clean-cut organisers at the youth camp’s mass wedding. “They became extinct because they did not have enough sex. That must not happen to Russia”.
Obediently, couples move to a special section of dormitory tents arranged in a heart-shape and called the Love Oasis, where they can start procreating for the motherland.
With its relentlessly upbeat tone, bizarre ideas and tight control, it sounds like a weird indoctrination session for a phoney religious cult.
But this organisation – known as “Nashi”, meaning “Ours” – is youth movement run by Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin that has become a central part of Russian political life.’
‘New research indicates that hacking the atmosphere — pumping microscopic particles into the stratosphere or clouds to block sunlight and offset global warming caused by greenhouse gases — is imminently possible. The problem is we could never, ever stop doing it.
Climate scientists Damon Matthews of Concordia University and Ken Caldeira of Stanford ran the numbers on atmospheric geo-engineering through a climate simulation and found that while cranking out carbon dioxide at business-as-usual rates we can geo-engineer our way back toward pre-industrial temperatures in short order, reaching 1900 levels in about five years. Not only that, it would be fairly cheap and easy to do.
Pumping 20 to 25 liters of aerosols per second to keep enough particles in the stratosphere would cool temperatures, causing the planet’s carbon sinks to suck more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.
“That kind of flow rate can be handled by a single fire hose,” said Caldeira. “For something like $100 million a year you could probably keep a hose in the stratosphere suspended by an array of balloons with pumps along the way.”
The problem is what happens if we stop short or screw it up.’
‘Police marksmen have shot dead one heifer, but a second remains on the loose after the pair escaped from a Darlington cattle market.
Officers are searching the market town for the remaining animal described as “extremely dangerous”.
Commuters and shoppers have been warned to be on their guard as police say the heifer, weighing about half a ton, will attack anyone it sees. [..]
A spokesman for Durham Police said: “We cannot stress too highly how dangerous this animal is.
“It will attack anyone it sees and the public must not approach it in any circumstances.’
‘Volcanic activity on the ‘bald mountain’ towering over St Pierre, Martinique, was usually so inconsequential that no one took seriously the fresh steaming vent-holes and earth tremors during April, 1902. By early May, however, ash began to rain down continuously, and the nauseating stench of sulphur filled the air. Their homes on the mountainside made uninhabitable, more than 100 fer-de-lance snakes slithered down and invaded the mulatto quarter of St Pierre. The 6-ft long serpents killed 50 people and innumerable animals before they were finally destroyed by the town’s giant street cats. But the annihilation had only begun. On May 5, a landslide of boiling mud spilled into the sea, followed by a tsunami that killed hundreds and, three days later, May 8, Mt Pelee finally exploded, sending a murderous avalanche of white-hot lava straight toward the town. Within three minutes St Pierre was completely obliterated. Of its 30,000 population, there were only two survivors.’