The Holy Grail of climate change alarmism is to link earthquakes and volcanic eruptions to humans driving SUVs. A recent article in the Conversation returned to this theme noting “evidence” that the loss of surface ice in Scandinavia “triggered numerous earthquake events between 11,000 and 7,000 years ago”. Alas, for Earth-moving purists, the ‘evidence’ quoted showed that the only tectonic plate action was to be found in the hard drive of a researcher’s computer. Substantial earthquakes might have occurred when ice sheets lifted at the start of deglaciation, but the possibility in this case seems to lie with “postglacial rebound models”.
The wider idea is to catastrophise the weight of water on the land said to be arising from higher rainfall levels. Author Matthew Blackett, an Associate Professor of Physical Geography at Coventry University, argues that during the summer monsoon season, the weight of up to four metres of rainfall compresses the crust both vertically and horizontally. When this water disappears, the effective ‘rebound’ destabilises the region “and increases the number of earthquakes that occur”. One might wonder if draining a four metre diving pool would have a similar localised effect, although it is likely the required six inches of base concrete would cope! On his University page, Blackett declares that he is ”passionate to ensure that his scientific research is positively impactful for society”.
The feisty Australian climate journalist Joanna Nova was not in a charitable mood in reviewing this “abject drivel”. Four metres of rain means a lot to homo sapiens, she observed, “but it’s hard to believe a plate of rock 30 kilometres thick would care less or even notice. It’s all absurd.” The author probably thinks he’s being provocative, “but he’s just proving what a wasteland Big Government Science is”, she added.
Climate breakdown narratives frequently rely on higher global precipitation – when they are not claiming increased droughts, of course – but a group of international scientists recently analysed specialist satellite data and found that rainfall trends in the 21st century have become less intense across the world. The work of water resources expert Demetris Koutsoviannis has shown that the highest frequency of global-scale extreme rainfall events occurred from 1960-1980. Since then, he reported, the frequency and intensity of rainfall events have “decreased remarkably”.
Associate Professor Blackett is also up for looking at how climate change “might” trigger volcanic eruptions. Research is said to have found a correlation between glacial-load changes on the Earth crust, and the occurrence of volcanic activity. About 5,500 years ago the Earth briefly cooled , glaciers began to expand in Iceland and local volcanic activity “markedly reduced”. But the research paper quoted notes: “Numerical models suggest that smaller changes in ice volumes over short time scales may also influence rates of mantle melt generation. However this effect has not been verified by the geological record.”