Friday, March 5, 2010

Being Natural Is Not Always Good - 2

A post on this blog a while back offended some people.

There are those who evidently think that the natural world is full of good and only good, so that nothing "bad" ever happens that is natural.

The frequency of earthquakes recently, which kill hundreds of thousands of people, is a natural phenomenon that terrorises the human and other species.

These events show that there are terrifying events against innocents that seem to be built into the cosmos.

In that sense there is natural terrorism which is not "good".

Asteroids, another natural phenomenon in the sense they are not man made, have even made some species extinct:

A panel of 41 international experts ... reviewed 20 years' worth of research to determine the cause of the Cretaceous-Tertiary (KT) extinction, which happened around 65 million years ago. The extinction wiped out more than half of all species on the planet, including the dinosaurs, bird-like pterosaurs and large marine reptiles, clearing the way for mammals to become the dominant species on Earth.

The new review of the evidence shows that the extinction was caused by a massive asteroid slamming into Earth at Chicxulub (pronounced chick-shoo-loob) in Mexico.

(Science Daily, see also). Not so nice for a natural event is it? Great quantities of the oil reserves buried under the earth are also, in my opinion, the results of catastrophes that have happened during the history of this planet:

The original organic source material of both oil shale and petroleum was at least associated with, and probably derived from, at least in part, green algae, since Treibs (28) has found chlorophyll porphyrine in all oil shales examined by him and in all petroleums containing asphalt or, in other words, in all petroleums not purified by selective adsorption during migration. This discovery of chlorophyll porphyrins is undoubtedly the most important single discovery bearing upon the question of petroleum origin. It definitely connects up both oil shales and petroleum with green algae and proves that both have never been at any time in their history subjected to high temperatures and, in agreement with other evidence, shows that the original organic source material was deposited sufficiently rapidly to seal in the organic debris under anaerobic conditions.

(Ohio Journal Of Science; Vol. 48, Num. 4; emphasis added). If catastrophes destroyed the dinosaurs, why would it not also destroy other animal and plant species, burying large masses of them instantly?

At one time scientists were dead set against any catastrophe theories, because for one thing, the concepts of biological evolution were taught as if there was a perfecting process in place where everything was heading naturally to a better place.

Disruptive catastrophe was not seen as part of a perfecting process, but rather as anathema to it.

All we need to do is look at the nature of our Sun, and if we give it the full import we should, we see that catastrophe is natural to the cosmos as it is currently functioning.

Part of our avoidance of extinction, then, is to avoid the catastrophes built into the cosmos, not to ignore them.

Monday, March 1, 2010

eMail From Repower America

I received this email from Repower America:

Next week could make or break America's climate and energy future.

Last summer, the House passed a comprehensive clean energy and climate bill that could create millions of clean energy jobs and begin to address the climate crisis. Now, a new Senate version, with significant support from key Senators, could be less than a week away* -- but lobbyists from Big Oil and Coal are already lining up to do whatever they can to gut critical provisions.

We can't let lobbyists and special interests win. America needs clean energy and the jobs it will bring to our economy.

That's why we're launching our biggest calling campaign ever. We're joining forces with a coalition of climate groups to create a perfect storm of grassroots pressure from Tuesday through Thursday of next week. Can you get us off to a big start by pledging to call your Senators next Tuesday?

Clicking here will record your pledge to call next Tuesday.


Your calls were crucial to shutting down Senator Lisa Murkowski's attack on the Clean Air Act last month.

Now, with the Senate negotiating the contents of this critical new bill, its fate is in our hands too. We need to keep our Senators' phones ringing off the hook -- the more they understand that passing this bill is our top priority, the more they will make it theirs.

To get it done, we're setting the ambitious goal of 20,000 calls from the Climate Protection Action Fund alone next week. And to reach that number, we want to start off with 1,000 pledges to call next Tuesday that we can count on from committed supporters like you. Can you help us reach our goal?

Clicking here will record your pledge to call your Senator next Tuesday.

Successful legislation isn't just important here in the U.S. As we saw at the Copenhagen Climate Conference, countless nations are relying on our action to catalyze global efforts to promote clean energy and reduce carbon pollution.

But for this bill to make a real impact, it's got to include two things:

1) Strong investment in clean energy to create American manufacturing and construction jobs, and

2) A cap on carbon pollution that limits the amount of carbon companies can emit, giving them incentives to reduce emissions while holding violators accountable.

Your calls have made a difference before. And next week, your barrage of phone calls will tell our Senators to stop wasting time, stop caving to big oil and coal, and finally pass a strong clean energy and climate bill -- because we can't afford the consequences of their inaction.

Please click here now to pledge to make a call to your Senators to support strong clean energy and climate legislation


Dave Boundy
Campaign Manager
Repower America

* Juliet Eilperin and Steven Mufson, "Reid demands climate bill ASAP," Washington Post - Post Carbon blog, February 24, 2010.