Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Interesting Items in the News

This weekend, in between my battles with chapter 25, I gleaned the following interesting news items from the Internet:

From Pravda.ru :

Earth on the Brink of an Ice Age
According to a large and compelling body of evidence from within the field of climate science, data sources indicate the 10,000 year warming trend we've been experiencing is approaching its end and the earth will be gripped in an ice age for the next 100,000 years.

Record snow in Wisconsin steals spotlight from frigid temps
The average December temperature in Wisconsin was 15.8 degrees, which makes it the 10th coldest December in the city since weather records were kept starting in the 1880s, said officials from the National Weather Service in Green Bay.

Other cold related headlines this weekend :

Chicago socked by Snow - Over 8 inches at O'Hare

Snowblast set for Gotham

Snow on Palm Trees in Marseilles France

Snow continues to trap thousands at Madrid Airport

Life at -78 degrees in Alaska

And they're predicting unusually cold weather for the Jan 20 inauguration in DC -- temps around 30 with potential for icy rain...

But wait... aren't we supposed to be worrying about... Global warming? How can all this be happening if the world is getting warmer? Oh, that's right. All these frigid temps and snowfall are actually a sign it's getting warmer. Right.

On a related note (sort of) there was also a report on Fox News this weekend about the potential for a massive solar storm that could take place soon. According to this article the sun is on an 11 year cycle with respect to its activity levels. It's in a lull now, but the next peak is expected to be strong.

In 1989, the sun unleashed a tempest that knocked out power to all of Quebec, Canada. And in 2003, "a remarkable rampage included 10 major solar flares over a two-week period, knocking out two Earth-orbiting satellites and crippling an instrument aboard a Mars orbiter.

In 1859 an especially powerful storm shorted telegraph wires in the US and Europe causing widespread fires.

Were a widespread, powerful magnetic storm similar to the one in 1859 to occur today, it could knock out most of the US power grid with potentially catastrophic social and economic disruptions.

When is this peak predicted to occur? (all you Raptards out there, listen up) 2012. LOL

Back to work!