If you see a 1,000 ton boulder dropping from the sky, don’t look for an even bigger bird or a UFO or the rest of a meteor shower. The cause could be something else … climate change. That’s a new theory by the man who many regard as the “father of global warming.” Should we be looking for falling rocks instead of rising waters to tell us that it’s too late?
Retired NASA climatologist James Hansen was on the island of Eleuthera in the Bahamas recently (NASA must have a pretty good retirement package) with Bahamas geologist Paul Hearty to study two famous and mysterious boulders which locals call “the Cow and the Bull.” At more than 1,000 tons and 22 feet high, they‘re bigger than the average cow or bull and just two in a line of huge boulders. How they got there has been debated for centuries.
Hansen is the scientist who proposed recently that a 2 degrees C increase in global temperature above pre-industrial age levels is “highly dangerous.” How high? Flying boulders!
Hearty has long believed that, because of their age difference with the surrounding terrain, Cow, Bull and their boulder buddies were tossed out of the sea to their current locations, possibly by a huge tsunami. Hansen thinks it was not a tsunami but something bigger … something that could be happening again today.
According to Hansen’s new research with Hearty, the cause was a catastrophic storm which took place during the Eemian period some 118,000 years ago. At that time, the climate was warmer, the oceanic waters were higher and their levels changed rapidly as a result.
Hansen’s flying boulder scenario starts with the polar ice caps collapsing, followed by massively rising seas and a fast meeting of cold polar waters with hot tropical waters that spawned superstorms with the power to cause underwater landslides and huge waves big enough to lift boulders from the ocean floor to the island cliffs.
As expected, Hansen and Hearty’s flying boulder theory is debated by scientists who support the freak tsunami or other possible causes and by those few scientists and many non-scientists who question climate change.
What do you think? Did climate change make boulders fly? Will it happen again? Whatever the case, it’s more food for thought for the world leaders meeting in Paris at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change.