Category Archives: Extinction

Our system is so interdependent that a electromagnetic pulse from the sun or nuclear weapon that knocks out the grid also knocks out transportation and the financial system. Oil decline will eventually lead to the end of transportation and fall of civilization as I explain in my book “When Trucks stop running: Energy and the Future of Transportation (Springer 2016). When you add in declining resources (especially phosphorous which is essential for agriculture), corrosion of infrastructure, climate change caused food reduction and rising oceans plus all the other factors in decline and collapse, it wouldn’t take much to turn a gradual into a fast collapse. My gut feeling is that there will be a fast crash that would take years at worst (EMP or nuclear war), and decade(s) at best. Certainly not centuries.

Escape to Mars after we’ve trashed the Earth?

The idea that we can go to Mars is touted by NASA, Elon Musk, and so many others that this dream seems just around the corner.  If we destroy our planet with climate change, pollution, and so on, no problem, … Continue reading

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Biodiversity loss has gone beyond the planetary boundaries

Source: Tanja Folnovic, June 23, 2015 “Loss of Biodiversity”. http://blog.agrivi.com/post/loss-of-biodiversity [ The survival of homo sapiens depends on the ecosystem that supports us, so a loss of biodiversity is a threat to our survival and ultimately can lead to extinction. … Continue reading

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Human over-consumption causes far more biodiversity loss than climate change

2016-8-13. Climate change isn’t the biggest danger to Earth’s wildlife, our thirst for natural resources is even more damaging (2016-8-10 “Biodiversity: The ravages of guns, nets, and bulldozers” Nature) For better or worse, human society has developed into a force … Continue reading

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Overfishing is driving large marine creatures extinct

[Overfishing is driving marine mammals extinct.  Luckily oil will soon begin a relentless decline and fishing boats won’t be able to travel to the ends of the world using spotter planes to net the remaining schools of fish.  And it … Continue reading

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Nuclear war between India and Pakistan more likely, up to a billion deaths

[ It doesn’t take an all out war between the United States and Russia to cause a billion or more deaths.  Even a small war could do that (Robok, A. 2007. Climatic consequences of regional nuclear conflicts. Atmospheric Chemistry and … Continue reading

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Largest Mass Extinction caused by Mega-Eruptions in Siberia

Kerr, R.A. December 20, 2013. Mega-Eruptions Drove the Mother of Mass Extinctions.  Science  Vol. 342:1424  [Excerpts] After 20 years of trying, researchers have finally convicted massive volcanic eruptions in Siberia as the culprit in the greatest of all mass extinctions, … Continue reading

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Menhaden going extinct — the key food source at bottom of food web

[ This is a really long introduction so I can reply to a comment that menhaden are “neither overfished nor experiencing overfishing”.   Huh? Both their numbers and range are small compared to their original population. If there were a reduction, … Continue reading

Posted in Biodiversity Loss, Extinction, Fisheries, Starvation | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Scientific American: Peak oil and coal may keep catastrophic climate change in check

[ Since conventional oil, 90% of supply, peaked in 2005-6 we’ve been on a plateau.  Since the rate of conventional oil decline exponentially decreasing, and population is still exponentially increasing, it is unlikely unconventional oil like shale “fracked” oil, tar … Continue reading

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Humans driving species to extinction 1,000 times the natural rate

[ According to a paper published in Science the current rates of extinction are 1000 times the background rate. This estimate is higher than previous estimates is due to a more sophisticated analysis. Other extinction news: 2017-1-18 World’s primates facing … Continue reading

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Nuclear winter: World-wide ozone loss from small nuclear war = 1 billion + deaths.

[ Carl Sagan first introduced the idea of a “nuclear winter”, which helped to end the cold war.  The smoke from fires started by bombs would absorb so much sun the earth wold grow cold, dry, and dark, killing plants … Continue reading

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