Posting in Environment
Scientists always thought tectonic movements affect climate because it creates new mountains and trenches in the sea. The opposite is is also true.
Climate causes the earth to move. An international team of researchers discovered that more rainfall in India made the Indian tectonic plate speed up by factor of 20 percent.
“The significance of this finding lies in recognizing for the first time that long-term climate changes have the potential to act as a force and influence the motion of tectonic plates," Giampiero Iaffaldano, researcher at Australian National University, told Cosmos.
The scientists studied monsoon records in India for the past 10 million years and linked it to the motion of the tectonic plates, reports the Sydney Morning Herald. Of course, the seismic shifts didn't happen overnight, it took millions of years to change the direction of plates. Still, tectonic plates move very slowly...about the speed at which your fingernails grow, explained Iaffaldano.
The study was published in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters.
All this study showed was that plate movement occurs on a feedback mechanism: It's not all one-sided after all. In India, more rain made the plates move faster. But remember, the change happened slowly - at about one centimeter per year.
You might be thinking you already knew this, but this finding is counter-intuitive. First of all, we knew that plate movement can create new mountains and affect ocean basins. But now, researchers are finding out that it can work the other way too. Climate change can cause seismic shifts - and possibly make some regions more likely to have large earthquakes than others.
Long-term climate change could explain huge seismic events such as the earthquake that struck Japan. However, Iaffaldano doesn't want us to jump to any conclusions: This finding doesn't mean more earthquakes are more likely to occur.
The point? This is the first time climate change has been linked to the movement of tectonic plates. Ultimately, knowing about the feedback loop might help scientists understand which areas of the world are more likely to have an earthquake.
Monsoons are spinning the Earth's plates [Cosmos] via Agence France-Press
Apr 14, 2011
The writeup underestimates the connection. We have to remember that waters accounts for 70% of the surface area and these are held up by plates that serve as basins. These basins vary in sizes, and the biggest is that of the Pacific Ocean which account for 30% of total surface area of the Earth. These disproportionate basin sizes is responsible for load shifts on the basins. When there is polar ice melting a great amount of water is added to the Pacific basin which is then push downward causing the basin edges to bump into the surrounding plates that make up the Pacific ring of fire.
GUYS LIKE THIS IDIOT "cd3rdWILL" are the reason humanity will FAIL AS A SPECIES.Their lack of intelligence and pure ignorance fueled by a over inflated ego and a false sense of superiority and just plain unfounded arrogance make for a doomsday cocktail for the race as a whole!They are to lazy to actually do any real research. Instead the stuff their empty heads up the back side of their am radio and fox news spin gods. Parroting all of the half truths and well basically flat out lies that are fead to them daily. Just so their masters can continue to make a profit at the expense of our children s future. The Arrogance with which the spew out these false facts and spin as truth is evidence enough of their own personal failure as a human being. But it also shows how detrimental their kind are to our species success as a whole! May their actually be a god to save us/ Because by the time if ever when these cro mags finally pull their heads out of their back sides.It will be far to late for everybody
GUYS LIKE THIS IDIOT "cd3rd" ! THEY ARE THE VERY REASON THAT THE HUMAN RACE GUYS LIKE THIS IDIOT "cd3rdWILL" are the reason humanity will FAIL AS A SPECIES.Their lack of intelligence and pure ignorance fueled by a over inflated ego and a false sense of superiority and just plain unfounded arrogance make for a doomsday cocktail for the race as a whole!They are to lazy to actually do any real research. Instead the stuff their empty heads up the back side of their am radio and fox news spin gods. Parroting all of the half truths and well basically flat out lies that are fead to them daily. Just so their masters can continue to make a profit at the expense of our children s future. The Arrogance with which the spew out these false facts and spin as truth is evidence enough of their own personal failure as a human being. But it also shows how detrimental their kind are to our species success as a whole! May their actually be a god to save us/ Because by the time if ever when these cro mags finally pull their heads out of their back sides.It will be far to late for everybody
...which has since been scrubbed from their site. As usual, the "political scientists" that took bits-and-pieces of what supported their agenda, and then took to screaming about doom.
John, #31 Why not read the original paper and see if it says anything like you think it's saying (hint, it doesn't): http://www.osce.org/eea/14851
...that the 50-million people predicted by the UN to be displaced by 2010 didn't have to move. Recent census figures report that the UN was off by only -51-million.
The beluga whale wasn't found there because sea level was that much higher when the whale died but because the land was low enough to be below sea level at the time. The land was depressed from the weight of the thousands of feet of ice over it. When the ice melted at the end of the last ice age the land started rebounding but sea level rose faster than the land so for a while Lake Champlain was an arm of the ocean. Eventually sea level rise (nearly) stopped and the land caught up. Here's a Wikipedia article on the Champlain Sea: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champlain_Sea
Remember that a beluga whale was found during the building of a railroad bed in Vermont almost 150 feet above the current sea level. Frozen methane hydrates sitting 500 feet deep did not have to hit atmosphere to melt and boil off. At depth they can remain frozen in water as warm as 59?F because of pressure. But with a boiling point of around ?250 degrees F at sea level a major release can occur in about 200 feet of 40 degree F water.
Lightening Joe, Yes the world is warming naturally and has been for hundreds of years, long, long before the dramatic post-World War 2 increase in man-made atmospheric CO2 that everyone seems so worried about. The average rate of warming over the last 160 years of the instrumental temperature record was a distinctly unalarming 0.4degC per century. You can check this yourself by downloading the official HadCRUT3 world temperature data series, plotting it out, and measuring the slope of the linear regression line. Or you could just look at it here: www.thetruthaboutclimatechange.org/temps.html Now I think you would agree that a natural warming of 0.4degC per century is distinctly unalarming and nothing for anybody to be worried about. So why all the fuss? It is because a few climate scientists in the 1960s developed an atmospheric radiative transfer theory which predicted that the very significant increase in atmospheric CO2 that was occurring as a result of post-WW2 industrialisation would result in a much greater rate of atmospheric warming - equivalent to, say, a rate of 2 degrees per century or more rather than the 0.4degC per century hitherto measured. And lo and behold, as they watched the HadCRUT3 (and the other) world temperature data series over the years from 1970 to 2000, it did indeed appear to be happening excatly as they had predicted - an alarming rate of increase of 4 or 5 times the underlying natural climb, as you can see from the graph. However, in 2000 the dramatic rise mysteriously abated. It is now considered probable by many scientists that the apparently alarming 30 year rise was simply the upswing part of a long-established natural 65 to 70 year up-and-down ocean temperature oscillation which has been a feature of the natural world for hundreds, if not thousands, of years - in which case it was certainly not due to man-made CO2! If this theory is correct, the next 20 years should show a compensating downward swing - leaving us with the same old 0.4degC per century long term average that we had enjoyed before. But if it is wrong, the curve must soon resume its alarming upward rise as we pump more and more man-made CO2 into the atmosphere. Of course prudence dictates that we should monitor the temperature closely over the next few years to see which theory is correct. But it is surely sensible to wait and see whether or not the temperature does start to turn down rather than betting the farm now on ruinously expensive carbon reduction strategies that may serve simply to line the pockets of the rich and powerful at the expense of the poor and gullible.
cdc3rd: Global Warming IS still true, and is still the preferred term among those who know it. The "shift" to Climate Change seems to have been induced by the fool deniers who "accept" the reality of climate change, but insist that the world is not warming. But it is. It's the warming that MAKES the climates change. The "old" term is still current and still operative, and still evocative of the results we can expect in years to come. And get this clear: the fact that YOU scorn the science, in no way means that those of us who value the educated opinions of scientists must take your scorn seriously. Good TRY, though, to cast the whole issue as a "blast from the past."
It was just a matter of time when someone would link Global Climate Change, and more specifically MAN_MADE Global Climate Change to the movement of the continental (tectonic) plates, resulting of course in heightened earthquake activity. Next up: It's George Bush's fault!
I understand that tectonic plate movement can influence weather. The reverse seems a litle precious given the reputation of today's global warming scientists. So what is the science behind this theory? And by the way, fingernails grow at half an inch a month. Six inches a year or about 15 centimeters. The article compares the movement of plates to fingernail growth but then states the plates move a centimeter a year. Until the information is clarified a tad more I will not be able to put much faith in this new theory.
zackers, You are right, CO2 is absorbed by geologic processes. But it's a very slow process. To quote from Wikipedia: This geological weathering will absorb the remaining 20?40% of anthropogenic carbon dioxide over the period of tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of years. So it's not fast enough to help the present situation.
It's thought that one of the biggest factors in the absorption of CO2 is all the raw granite exposed by the growth of the Himalayas. Without it, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere would be significantly greater. If climate change just makes the Indian plate move faster into the Asian plate, it will expose more granite in the Himalayas, helping to reduce CO2. Whether or not this will completely offset man-made global warming, my point is that you can't assume that everything works in only one direction. Nature is full of positive and negative feedback loops.
Methane hydrates frozen in 400 feet of water were suddenly, 10,000 years in geologic time is suddenly, in shallow warmer waters. There's some truth in that but don't forget that as the glaciers retreated sea level rose as well, probably faster than the isostatic rebound raised the land. Sea level is over 300 feet higher that it was at the end of the last glaciation about 25,000 years ago.
As glaciers retreated there are parts of coastal North America that rose hundreds of feet with all of the weight gone. Methane hydrates frozen in 400 feet of water were suddenly, 10,000 years in geologic time is suddenly, in shallow warmer waters. Millions of tons of natural methane were released which accelerated the warming curve.
Tectonic events absolutely can cause climate change. They just generally don't happen fast enough to be the cause of climate change on less than millennial time scales. For instance it appears that one of the main causes of the ice age we are currently in and the cycle of approximately 100,000 year glaciations and interglacials was the rise of the Isthmus of Panama around 3 million years ago cutting off the flow of water between the tropical Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The Earth's climate is very dependent on the configuration of the continents. But the changes just don't happen fast enough to be noticeable on century time scales. The Earth's magnetic polarity has flipped thousands of times over the life of the planet, the most recent being about 780,000 years ago. It takes 1,000-10,000 years for a reversal to complete. There is no known connection between geomagnetic reversals and climate change but even if there were it doesn't appear to happen fast enough to be that significant on less than multiple century time scales. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geomagnetic_reversal
...is that with all of the billions being spent on carbon-related climate research, very little seems to be directed at research investigating the effects of the rapidly moving magnetic field, which deflects and redirects the majority of high-energy particles that constantly bombard the earth from the sun. And the implications of the magnetic field flipping are extreme; the fact that a simple compass will no longer function as before is the least of the problems we would face.
Do they have the cause and effect reversed? Core samples have shown that the earths magnetic pole has completely flipped at least 3 or 4 times in the planets geologic history. Many events are far beyond mans control. We either adapt to what Mother Nature throws at us or die
This was a short article with insufficient information. The Indian subcontinent is still smashing into Asia, the Himalayas are still growing. The article did not mention the direction that India is moving. With the land masses rising at the Himalays and the winds carrying moisture through that region would combine to increase the monsoon precipitation. It is a "chicken or the egg" kind of argument in the article, that climate change causes the tectonic plates to move faster or the changes caused by tectonic plates causes climate patterns to change.
...that it isn't tectonic plate movement that is causing climate change? And it's not just the plates that are moving, but the earth's core itself, as evidenced in the massive increase in the movement of the magnetic pole over the last decade and a half.
#12 starts to zero in on the matter at hand. There has been a growing body of study on this for some time as it happens. See my post on this from a while back (http://climatechange.foreignpolicyblogs.com/2009/10/20/earthquakes-tsunamis-and-the-like/) and particularly the proceedings of this conference on Climate Forcing of Geological and Geomorphological Hazards (http://www.abuhrc.org/newsmedia/Pages/event_view.aspx?event=5)
Well, the weight could have something to do with it. It certainly affects areas that have been covered by ice sheets. The isostatic rebound that you get when ice sheets melt and take that weight off the ground certainly causes earthquakes. #11 Not every story is about something to worry about. Sometimes it's just some interesting science that you may not have know about before. The tectonic plate movement changes from climate effects is slow enough that it isn't particularly significant on human time scales.
If you think about the weight loads on land of melting ice caps, it is quite reasonable to expect geologic uplift as that weight shifts from land as it melts and runs to the sea - and the earth quakes that goes with this process. Further, it doesn't just affect the areas where the ice caps melt - plate dynamics change all over the floating earth crust as weight is redistributed from land to ocean basin. However, this certainly isn't new. Ice caps have been in flux since there was ice and will remain source. The other thing that isn't new is man's requirement to adapt. Our ancestors were able to with minimal resources. Of course they weren't being constantly manipulated by self-serving various political parties and had little time to sit around and piss and moan.
And I should care about this? Centimeter a year, millions of years to occur. I won't loose any sleep over this story.
fitobetied: " Northern Europe and Canada are no longer covered by glaciers." They weren't in the 1890's either - read the raft of articles in the New York Times regarding the shrinkage of glaciers in the Artic. When the Norse came to Greenland and Iceland, those lands were not covered in ice - oddly enough some of the old homestead sites are now showing up that have been under ice for quite some time. Climate changes over and over again - and for the most part the idea that humans can change it is rather egotistical. "Mother Nature" is what it is. A more accurate theory might be obtained by following the money...who is profiting from "climate change"?
Anything is possible. Deep earth fluid injection has already been seen to lubricate small faults and trigger localized earthquakes in the 1.5 to 3 range. Start injecting and earthquake swarms start, some times within hours. Stop the injections and they end within a few weeks. Can heavy rains over an extended period of time soak in deep enough?
"The point? This is the first time climate change has been linked to the movement of tectonic plates" Linked??? Fact: 30% of people that are involved in accidents have eaten carrots in the past week. Are the two actions linked? Total BS.
Proof -- Northern Europe and Canada are no longer covered by glaciers. As I recall, man did not have cars and we did not have any oil wells when those glaciers started to retreat.
riverat1, Actually, I suspect that it's more likely the added weight of all the extra water upon the land. As it falls onto and runs down the mountains, it adds momentum to the plate. cd3rd, grow up. Your post is a non-sequitur to this discussion.
I imagine the rainfall affects tectonic movement by providing lubrication allowing the movement to speed up.
Rainfall is recorded in the geologic record over time. It's just a matter of learning how to read it. #1, please tell me "when the globe decided it was not warming" because it hasn't stopped warming for the 4 decades.
It is interesting to look at the Cosmos article directly. On the page is a link to a study that says plate speed is primarily determine by a completely different set of factors. While the quoted story on weather affecting speed offers no explanation of the theory or the mechanics at work the other story offers a detailed explanation.
There are only two types of people who spew this stuff: 1 - Corrupt politicians and globalists who fund bogus research results to desperately "prove" that carbon fuels are changing the climate. Why? Taxation and regulation of everything we eat, drink, breath, touch, use and even think about. Because everything, life itself, is inextricably linked to carbon. 2. Fools who actually believe this garbage. Remember the quick about face to 'climate change' when the globe decided it was not warming? Nobody even noticed. That is how cults are - true belief no matter the evidence. Apparently the lies, falsified research, UN corruption, and carbon credit trading scams were just a minor setback. I mean, why give up so easy on the ultimate global Ponzi scheme? ----------------------------------------