GeologicalScienceBlog - subjects include Geology, Climatology, Environmental Science, NASCAR, Beer, Property Rights, Random Thoughts, & Politics from a Christian Conservative/Libertarian/pragmatist viewpoint. As a Dad & Grandad, I am concerned about the overgrowth of government at the expense of freedom. Background - two degrees in Geology (BS '77, MS '90), started studying Geology beginning Senior Year of high school (1971 - 1972) <68>

Friday, May 22, 2009

As Mother England is a Barometer...

we can see future of trouble with the continual following of the "liberal model" (well, we already knew that!).

This Moonbattery post reminds us of children being recruited as spies for the nanny state (they already are here, in some respects).

But also of note is the irrationality of the British "garbage police". One of the tasks given the child-spies is to watch for "fly-tippers".

From the post:

"Fly-tipping" is British for illegitimately disposing of waste. Given the surreal nature of Britain's garbage regulations, the only alterative (sic) in some cases is to let it pile up in your living room. They'll hit you with a £100 fine for putting out "too much" rubbish on trash day. You can be fined as much as £1,000 for the truly heinous crime of putting out your trash too early."

I seem to recall having read of stories of people that had to put their trash out early, as they would be at work when the garbage truck arrived. But that doesn't deter the bureaucrat-on-a-mission. They had to be fined. I dare say that in some areas, the garbage police are probably less popular than used-car salesmen.

I am sure that some communities probably already employ some that think such micromanagement is a necessity. I seem to recall someone in our county having floated the idea of fining people for throwing out recycleable items, though as I recycle anyway, personally it is not an issue as long as it doesn't become too absurd.

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Thursday, May 21, 2009

Natural Gas in North Carolina...Perhaps.

The wonders of the free-market system, when left unfettered.

According to this article, technologies now being practiced in areas producing shale gas might be utilized in two Triassic "Newark Basins" on the North Carolina Piedmont, the Dan River Basin and the Deep River Basin. (I tried to copy and post the NC map shown in the linked article, but it didn't work. I also tried to find a suitable diagram of a graben basin, with no luck.)

Basically, the Newark Basins are a series of elongate graben basins that form during periods of crustal extension. When the brittle crust is stretched and broken, some sections of the crust will subside along normal (gravity) faults. These basins are related to the Triassic and Jurassic Periods when Pangea was being stretched in "preparation" of splitting to begin the growth of the Atlantic Ocean basin. Before the basins were connected and deep-enough for ocean water ingress, they existed as inland basins with lakes and swamps. Without through-flowing river systems, organic material preserved in the shales and silts of these swamps could generate natural gas and oil under certain conditions (there is already some oil (and maybe gas) production from Newark Basins in other states).

[When my work schedule permits, I will try to expand on this subject. I apologize if I have left anyone "hanging".]

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Thursday Videos - Throwing More Taxpayer Money Around...

so that black Americans get on board with the Global Warming/Climate Change hysteria.

When a news poll revealed that in a survey of black Americans, only 5% considered "Climate Change" to be the most important issue facing them, the AGW machine lept into action and decided to give $500,000 of taxpayer money to the cause. Got to keep them on the plantation, after all. Can't have them thinking for themselves about such things as the economy, jobs, taxes, terrorism,...

From CNS News.

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Thursday, May 07, 2009

Thursday Videos - National Geographic Video on an Interesting Fossil Find

From the "it pays to be observant" file, even if you don't know what something is, pause a bit and notify someone.

It would have been a shame if these limestone slabs had been destroyed, as the embedded fossil whale bones rendered them unusable.

Just to toss in a little politics as an interference to science...if Sharia-driven Islamists got the total control of Egypt that they want, do you think there would be any fossil excavations taking place? Would women scientists be allowed to participate? Need I ask? [This is reality folks.] Fervent Islamists would just as soon flatten the pyramids and the Sphinx as look at them, as they are pre-Quran.

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Monday, May 04, 2009

What a Geologist Sees - Or Would Like to See (Updated)

Somewhat related to the last numbered What a Geologist Sees post (#27), here are the Top 15 places I would like to visit or revisit, now that I have a digital camera - after #1 in no particular order. [I may expand this to 20, later.]

1) Arches National Monument - I have been there twice (1977 and 1979) and both times my 35mm film camera crapped out.

2) Monument Valley

3) Antelope Canyon, AZ

4) Valles Caldera, near Los Alamos, NM and some of the nearby Rio Grande Rift features, including some south of Albuquerque.

5) The basalt flows along I-40 near Grants, NM

6) Mount Saint Helens

7) Hawaii - primarily the big island

8) Zion National Park

9) Portions of Wisconsin, where there are glacier-related landforms. When I was there in 1982, I inadvertently opened the back of my 35 mm without reeling the exposed film back into the cartridge. D'oh! My brewery photos were safe on another roll, but I lost all of my geology slides.

10) Glacier National Park

11) Aden Basalt Field, southern New Mexico - I learned to hate it when I was working on my Master's Thesis 20+ years ago, but I actually miss those monotonous flows. There are many things to enjoy and photograph while doing a walkabout.

12) Yellowstone National Park - last time I visited was 35 years ago.

13) Devil's Tower, NE Wyoming

14) Exposures of the Niobrara Chalk in Kansas, Castle Rock and Monument Rocks. Better still, somewhere where collecting fossils from the chalk is legal.

15) Yosemite National Park - again, last visit 35 years ago.

16) I would like to replicate my 1974 trip across the western U.S. with a non-geologist friend. This time, I would insist on stopping to take some more photos. As I was still an undergrad at that time, I would have a much better idea of what I waas looking at this time. (I will update more later.)

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In Case Any Geobloggers Visit...(Updated)

When my jobs and family allow (and I am in the proper mood), I sometimes blog on Geology-related themes, in my "What a Geologists Sees" series.

I blog about the political stuff because I am concerned about the future of my kids (14 and 22) and my new grandson (photos from when he was 3 1/2 weeks old - he is now almost 8 weeks old - time flies!) and any other future grandkids, as well as about 10 nieces and nephews, none of which have kids of their own, yet.

[As you can see in the 1st and 3rd photos, he can raise his head quite well and after I hadn't seen him in a few days, he was studying me, trying to figure out who I was. He actually raised his head a little the day he was born.]

I have seen both sides of the political aisle and the free-market, Conservative side (though flawed) seems the best for the long-term preservation of freedom and a measure of prosperity. We are not in trouble because of that model, we are in trouble because we deviated from the concepts and practices of that free-market model.

So, if you don't like my politics, in the name of decorum, please scroll on by to the Geology posts. I will add more as time permits.

As for Anthropogenic Global Warming, I am a skeptic because Good Science is not settled in a couple of decades, based upon some computer models when we have a Paleoclimate record rich with repeated periods of warming and cooling, for which there was no appreciable human influence.

I don't doubt that we can affect the climate through deforestation, the growth of Urban Heat Islands, and other land-use changes. But carbon dioxide only comprises 385 ppm (0.0385%) of the atmosphere and though it is a Greenhouse Gas, its effects are greatly overshadowed by the effects of Water Vapor and Clouds. It was born a political animal and it remains as such.

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