Global warming causes earthquakes?

Discussion in 'Physics' started by spinnaker, Jan 16, 2010.

  1. spinnaker

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    Danny Glover made a statement that global warming caused the recent earthquake in Haiti.

    While the earthquake in Haiti probably had a lot more to do with volcanic activity somewhere in or under the Caribbean, I couldn't help but thinking that Danny might not be as crazy as he sounds.

    I would think that the extra weight of water that has been redistributed from a land mass, into the ocean could have a effect on the tectonic under the ocean floor. Now I would think this would require massive amounts of water to have any effect. So much so, New York would be under water but I would think it could have an effect.

    So was Danny as crazy as he sounded? Is this as crazy as it sounds? :)
     
  2. 3ldon

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    Jan 9, 2010
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    Danny glover probably contributes more to global warming than all of Hati.

    Spinnaker, you can't be serious.
    if the earth was that sensitive, then you would see natural disaster chain reactions from storms, volcanoes, nuclear bomb tests, etc. there were no earth quakes caused by hurricane Katrina's 25 foot storm surge...
     
  3. Wendy

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    I have to agree with this statement. I tend to believe global warming is for real, but the effects we will see won't be earthquakes (even if volcanoes are considered weather).

    To me this is a problem with inertia, among other things.

    As I understand it earthquakes are mainly caused by tectonic shift, a slow, gradual movement of the plates of earth. Like one of the early Superman movies a well placed nuke might speed something that was going to happen anyway, but it wouldn't cause it in the sense that it was solely responsible.

    There are sensitive zones in earth we don't necessary want to mess with. Yellowstone Park, for example, is a barely dormant super volcano that might be ticked into early eruption.
     
  4. spinnaker

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    You are talking about localized activity. While we don't hvae a choice of where a hurricane would strike, we do have a choice of where we test weapons. I am sure one of the major factors that go in to choosing a site is that it must be geologically stable.

    I am talking about huge amounts of water over a vast area. You are more that likely to disturb a sensitive area.



    And volcanoes can cause earthquakes as well as landslides. Though I suspect this is more of a chicken and egg thing.
     
  5. beenthere

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    Read up on the Columbia Plateau flood basalts that came from the Yellowstone hot spot. Outputting over 100 cubic miles of basalt in a day kinda upsets the climate.
     
  6. 3ldon

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    Yes... but....
    No one is seriously concerned that the Three Gorges Dam is going to collapse into the ground fault it sits on due to the weight of the water behind it.
    10 meters of rising sea level over a hundred years is not going to have any effect on the ground.
    Water weighs less than dirt.
    The reason land floats, is because it is granite, and weighs less than basalt.
    A metric <snip> ton of land or water sliding into the sea is really just equalizing the systems that have been in place for a very long time.
    As i said earlier, if the earth were that sensitive, you would see earthquakes caused by tsunamis created by earthquakes. Instead we see aftershocks caused by earthquakes on the other side of the planet, with the tsunamis as a by product.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 17, 2010
  7. Wendy

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    Another forum brought up the point that if all the ice melts the sea levels wouldn't rise. There is an assumption there though, they are talking about sea born ice. It is going to be interesting if the Antarctic ice sheet slides off the landmass, not that I'm wanting to see it. Other land born ice is already making a difference, about an inch raise or so.

    As far as geology is concerned, there have been earthquakes, there are earthquakes, and there will be earthquakes. As in any chaotic system they are inherently unpredictable.
     
  8. spinnaker

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    We are kind of straying from the original subject but, wouldn't the sea levels remain relatively constant due to increased evaporation do to global warming?
     
  9. HarveyH42

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    Jul 22, 2007
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    Personally, I think our climate has work for so long, is because it's self correcting, and should be left to do it's thing. We can prepare and adapt to the changes, but think we are spinning our wheels, if we think there is even a small chance to change or alter the planet's course. We are small, and just along for the ride. I do believe we shouldn't be wasteful or messy, nobody wants to live in a toilet bowl. I have neighbors who seem to have trouble with trash cans and ashtrays...

    My guess is that if the rise in CO2 causes the climate to react by warming up, it should also increase water vapor, humidity. CO2, moisture, and a warmer climate, is ideal for plant growth, which would be a good thing for all hungry creatures. Isn't that the goal, a 'greener' planet. Plants remove CO2, water vapor becomes clouds, which blocks the sun (less heat for the CO2 to trap), Earth cools back down. The warming trend is normal and natural, not out of control, or never-ending. We just had one of the longest, coldest run in maybe 20 years I've been in Florida, even snowed. From what I understand, it was the entire northern hemisphere.

    There might be a little truth in the CO2 and Global Warming observation, but think it got blown way out of proportion with all the media hype, political agendas, and almost cult-like mentality. So much of it really isn't based on hard data, just proxies and models, its a belief, and requires a lot of faith.
     
  10. Wendy

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    Water vapor is another greenhouse gas, so I kind hope not.
     
  11. HarveyH42

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    Jul 22, 2007
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    I think the term 'greenhouse' is mis-used and deliberately misleading. Greenhouses use a physical barrier to trap in the heat. Water vapor doesn't always mean clouds either. A greenhouse will cool down without the sun, many are heated to maintain the optimal temperature. Some just provide enough protection to avoid freezing and cold damage during the winter months. Summer time, windows and vents are opened to release excess heat.

    Gases as one-way gates? They let in heat from the sun, but block it from being reflected back out? Yet there is a substantial difference between night and day temperatures, not to mention we would have burned up millions of years ago. Just not that simple or convenient. The vast majority of our atmosphere, is water vapor, which can condense into clouds, under the proper conditions. Believe this is more the way temperature is controlled.

    Regardless, we are still only looking a couple of degrees increase, over hundreds of years, not a crisis situation. Plenty of time time to study and adapt if needed. Haiti is having a crisis right now. About 400,000 people are without a place to call home, and barely receiving enough food and water to stay alive. Thought it kind of in bad taste, to add earthquakes to the list of Global Warming catastrophes. Most of these islands were born from volcanic activity, and they feel tremors every so often. There are a lot of other places on earth, which are more prone to earthquakes. There would have been a lot more, elsewhere is it was related to climate changes. This one was just an unfortunate event, and since they are so poor and over populated, they need a lot of help, and some place to relocate, least until some can construction can get done.
     
  12. Wendy

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    We hope the climate is self correcting, but the kind of stressors we put on it, maybe not. If not then we don't have hundreds of years. What we are doing is not the norm, it is a brand new experiment. Maybe it will adjust, maybe not.

    I've already stated my opinion, earthquakes are in a category that is is separate. I'd worry about drilling for oil or water first, and I'm not worrying about either. The forces and energies that make earthquakes are preexisting, we might move things around a little on the timeline (this is the nature of chaos), but they are going to happen.
     
  13. 3ldon

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    Jan 9, 2010
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    IMO we should be much more concerned that we will approach a 1 on the Kardashev scale within 200 years, or we will have collapsed into the dark ages, rather than worrying about the extra 30% CO2 in the air right now

    If world population is going to stabilize at say 9 billion, and energy prices stay the same, then I think we should be much more concerned about chemical pollution, rather than thermal pollution, because short of reducing world population there is nothing we can do to reduce CO2 levels, while still keeping energy consumption below 10x what it is now. Burning more coal so you can compress the CO2 and store it in tanks at the bottom of the ocean is not the answer. Yes it will temporarily store it but you still have to figure out what to do with it 100 years later.
    I do not believe we are capable of putting giant mirrors in space to reflect sunlight without a massive SNAFU 30 years later

    As energy gets cheaper as we approach a type I on the Kardashev scale, recycling becomes not only profitable but almost required, as the ratio between raw material cost and energy becomes higher and higher, it will be cheaper to distill your trash at 20,000K then it will be to make more plastic and that solves the pollution problem, we will then be able to afford extracting the CO2 out of the atmosphere and separating it back into carbon, making lots of carbon nanotube Dyson swarms and pushing the oxygen back into the air.
     
  14. eng1ne

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    Dec 4, 2009
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    Without examining our world without the effect of human beings, how can one make any comparison? Speculate forever...

    I prefer to know things than believe them. I don't know the world is warming because of CO2 emissions that humans are responsible for; similarly I don't know the world isn't warming for that reason.

    Return the first statement and read all again; repeat until tired.
     
  15. loosewire

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    Lets take trip back in time talk about your cruises to the Islands,
    they are hit by hurricanes, Bahamas and others what did you see
    the populations living off the American dollars.There are cruise curcuits
    all over the world so what have seen a different style of living. So now
    our style of living has changed,we need passports to get back into our own country.
    We can't afford the good life travel as much.The cruise Islands won't
    let you live or work there,just go and spend your money. Guys check In
    on the live and work policy for Americans in your country. I am getting to global
    warming, just go along for now on where every one can live and work
    without hassle. Another thing name the Islands that you love to travel to,
    was the solid buildings for goverment for hurricanes and diaster,mud slided.
    How does dead bodies affect the c02 when you have thousands of bodies.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010
  16. loosewire

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    You see chain hotels in all the Islands Haiti too. If you go to the Bahama's
    you see how beauiful the waters are. The same conditions are a well kept
    secret at Haiti,the cruise ships have been going to Haiti while peolple are
    dieing.The ships dock in front of 16 a foot wall that has been there right along.
    Tourist have said the food don't taste good with people dieing a few miles away.
    So is the world self ajusting to climate change,should the Island people go back to
    there Island way of life style Instead of ajusting to another style life that will
    throw other parts of the world out of balance at a critical in studies of climate
    change. If you were in charge where would you start,remember the government
    would be in your way,so what would you do.You have been appointed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010
  17. HarveyH42

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    Jul 22, 2007
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    Food tastes strange? What do you think they do with the dead bodies?
    Last I checked, Haiti had almost 200,000 confirmed dead, should continue to rise.

    Were did all the carbon in the oil and coal come from, originally? I was lead to believe it was from decayed organic matter, plants and animals. If all the global warming conjectures are correct, CO2 is very good for life on this planet. Several degrees warmer would be nice as well, considering the past month we've had here in Florida. Looks like a few months over priced and pathetic produce here.

    Anyway, I'm for believing that the planet is still recovering from the Ice Age, that killed all those plants and animals, that we are burning in our cars, power plants, and factories. Naturally the temperature is going to continue to rise, ice is going to melt. Just a theory, but some scientist believe the great Ice Age came from an impact, from a huge meteor, asteroid, or comet (ice ball).

    Industry is what built this country, and most of the others that seem to think themselves better off. CO2 restriction will really put a damper on that, developing countries will be kept poor, and many of us will join them as well. It's a pretty to big deal, and the 'science' and 'data' isn't really strong enough to make such huge changes, quickly. The warming, even if the worst projections, are even close, will be several hundred years before it's noticeable. Tax and Cap will be a huge burden we will all enjoy, the first few years it becomes law.

    We should be more environmentally conscious, and set a reasonable path to clean up our filthy ways. We have plenty of time, without killing ourselves in the process. Regardless, we will survive and adapt to what ever happens.
     
  18. spinnaker

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    Well I fail to see what cruise trips to the island have to do with the cause of the earthquakes but......

    Haiti is not an island. It is a nation. It shares the island of Hispanola with the Dominican Republic.

    Suspending or continuing trips to the island was a tough call for the cruise ship companies. The general thinking is that suspending the trips would do nothing to help the people of Haiti and only punish those that rely on the trips for their way of life. But I do agree that it would not be a whole lot of fun knowing people are dying just a few miles away. But I guess you could really carry similar guilt even under normal conditions if you knew how many of these people live from day to day.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2010
  19. Wendy

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    I've only superficially heard about the story. I wondered if they left any supplies they may have had surpluses on, especially food.
     
  20. HarveyH42

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    Jul 22, 2007
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    Doubtful. When they have problems with the ship, like the engines stop running, generators problems, fires... They still charge the passengers for drinks, even plain water, same as always.

    Personally, I don't think it helpful to bring a cruise ship, full tourist into a disaster area, just to feed their own morbid curiosity. Mostly, I think they want to avoid the losses, on all the cruises they booked months before. Beyond the capital, I doubt most see much tourist money, unless a few stay a little too far...
     
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