New thing, people! Once a month, I'm going to post reader-submitted links to great posts they've come across in the geoblogosphere. And yes, it's totally legit for those to be posts they've written themselves! So if you're a geoblog reader, or a geoblogger, and you want to submit a link, just send it along to dhunterauthor at gmail. I'll post them toward the end of the month.
I especially want to see our awesome women of the geoblogsphere engaging in some shameless self promotion. I know you write great stuff, and I know you're also often reluctant to shout out how amazing you are. So I'm specifically asking you to shout. Send me your links!
Why am I not telling men the same thing? Because they generally have no problem getting over their shyness and sending me their stuff. But for the shy guys in the audience: send me your links!
That goes triple for any non-binary bloggers that may be out there, FYI.
All right? All right. Here's May:
Back in November last year, I described how, very controversially, Arizona is exporting its water in vast quantities to Saudi Arabia, via alfalfa to feed Saudi cattle. In that post I quoted from the work of Elie Elhadj, who has compellingly documented the rape of the Kingdom's groundwater resources:
In 2004, Elie Elhadj of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), King’s College London published a blunt analysis of the extraordinary history of the destruction of the country’s water supplies. Titled “Camels Don’t Fly, Deserts Don’t Bloom: an Assessment of Saudi Arabia’s Experiment in Desert Agriculture” the report paints a catastrophic picture.
That experiment in desert agriculture is now essentially over, and Saudi Arabia relies almost entirely on imports of crops and cattle feed. In order to satisfy this need, the country's huge food and agriculture business, Almarai, buy farming land elsewhere in the world - including in the Arizona desert. Since I wrote that post, Almarai have added to their assets by buying land on the other side of the Colorado River in south-eastern California. Both California and Arizona are now in their fourth year of severe to exceptional drought.
Anyone reading pundits and politicians pontificating profusely about climate or environmental science will, at some point, have come across the “volcano gambit”. During the discussion they will make a claim that volcanoes (or even a single volcano) produce many times more pollutant emissions than human activities. Often the factor is extremely precise to help give an illusion of science-iness and, remarkably, almost any pollutant can be referenced. This “volcano gambit” is an infallible sign that indicates the author is clueless about climate science, but few are aware of its long and interesting history…
From Augustine to Mt. St. Helens
The ur-usage was a legitimate paper in Science in July 1980 by seismologist David Johnston writing about chlorine emissions in eruptions...
Maintain Your Positivity: This is a cartoon about a little volcano that could!
The Butler Cave Conservation Society, Incorporated, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit Virginia corporation dedicated to the conservation, exploration, survey, preservation, and scientific study of the caves in and around the Burnsville Cove, Virginia.
The BCCS owns or otherwise manages scores of caves in Bath and Highland Counties, including the Butler Cave-Sinking Creek System, the Chesnut Ridge Cave System (Bobcat, Burns, and Blarneystone Caves), and Robins Rift. Currently we have explored, mapped, and taken steps to conserve over 50 miles of caves, all centered in and around the Burnsville Cove. Read more about the BCCS and our Mission.
We are still actively exploring and finding new cave "in the cove" and we welcome experienced cavers to join us in conserving, digging, exploring, and surveying caves in the Burnsville, Virginia area.
The linear chains of islands running across the Pacific Ocean aren’t improbable coincidences of orderliness—they’re the product of hot towers of mantle rock punching volcanic holes through a tectonic plate sliding overhead. But if you follow the Hawaiian chain back to where the older seamounts no longer rise above the waves, you find a sharp dogleg, as you can see above.
We haven't had a satisfactory explanation for this sudden turn. One idea was that, given a stationary mantle hotspot, the tectonic plate must have changed direction at one point in time. This theory has never been entirely satisfactory, however—not least because the Louisville seamount chain in the South Pacific sports a gentler kink.
As you can see, there's plenty of room for more! And I'd definitely like to see a lot more focus on the geology blogs rather than news articles. So, while you're spelunking the geoblogsphere, don't forget to send your gems to dhunterauthor at gmail.