NY Times: The Next Mass Extinction Is Coming From Carbon Pollution Or Something

NY Times: The Next Mass Extinction Is Coming From Carbon Pollution Or Something

Over the past 10 years, the Cult of Climastrology has been working hard to compare the tiny increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide to previous periods, particularly those which featured mass extinctions. This outline of doom has become more prevalent over the past 4 years as they have dramatically increased their scary prognostications in an attempt to make people fearful enough to stop tuning their cult out. Now, we have the NY Times giving a platform to Peter Brannen, who writes about world ending doom quite a bit, but, get this, isn’t a scientist, but, just a journalist. This is the lead opinion piece this morning in the Opinion section

When Life on Earth Was Nearly Extinguished

It has been called the “Great Dying.”

The planet’s most profound catastrophe struck 252 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, killing 90 percent of life in the ocean and 75 percent on land. The fossil record nearly goes silent and remains startlingly impoverished for millions of years: trees disappear, bacteria replace coral reefs, insects hush. What looks like fungus spikes in the fossil record, perhaps the sepulchral rot of a dying world.

It was as close as earth has ever come to being sterilized altogether, and would take 10 million years for the planet to fully recover, setting the stage for the eventual rise of the dinosaurs.

“The End-Permian mass extinction is unique in earth history,” said Seth Burgess, a geologist with the United States Geological Survey. “Nothing else is as severe, and it’s not even close.”

Yeah, it was pretty bad, but, hey, it gets worse!

A growing body of evidence suggests that this ancient apocalypse was brought on, in large part, by gigantic emissions of carbon dioxide from volcanoes that erupted across a vast swath of Siberia. Today the consequence of quickly injecting huge pulses of carbon dioxide into the air is discussed as if the threat exists only in the speculative output of computer models. But, as scientists have discovered, this has happened many times before, and sometimes the results were catastrophic.

In fact, most scientific research shows that it was a combination of the massive volcanic release, reduced oxygen levels, and increased methane levels. Some even suggest that there was one or more strikes from a comet or asteroid that caused the event.

This month the journal Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology published a special issue that explores a growing body of evidence that past volcanic releases of carbon dioxide may have helped drive many of the most extreme die-offs in earth history.

Of course it does. Because climate change doom from carbon dioxide is all the rage.

Though volcanoes in Siberia had already been erupting for around 300,000 years, Dr. Burgess’s work indicates that it wasn’t until the magma started burning through fossil fuels on a colossal scale that the mass extinction began. The carbon dioxide was delivered to the atmosphere just as effectively as by any coal-fired power plant or minivan muffler today.

Wait, did the life present at the time have fossil fueled vehicles and planes?

Today humanity plays the role of that primeval Siberian supervolcano, burning through the world’s ancient stores of carbon, long buried underground in the form of oil, coal and natural gas. Though there were likely other killers afoot in the Great Dying — like ozone-destroying halocarbons, acid rain and a heavy dose of toxic heavy metals raining from the volcanic smog — it was the chemistry-warping pulse of carbon dioxide that has attracted the most suspicion for its role in nearly ending the world. And we have only to look at the modern ocean to see why.

Not mentioned in this unhinged rant, nor, quite frankly, most others that precede it, is that atmospheric CO2 was over 3,000ppm. And, yes, it did jump big time. But, so did the methane levels while the oxygen levels dropped. This is all per reconstructions. But, hey, chemistry-warping carbon pollution because you drove a fossil fueled vehicle to work.

As you can expect, the rest of the screed is all about man-caused dooooooooooom, attempting to scare people into giving up their money and freedom while empowering Big authoritarian government. They just never get the idea that trotting out stories of doom, especially trying to say we’re on our way to the next mass extinction, just doesn’t help their cause.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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