The Earth Has a Pulse: 27.5-Million-Year Cycle of Geological Activity Discovered

A new study published in Geoscience Frontiers gives a surprising result.

From Science Daily.

By NEW YORK UNIVERSITY JUNE 20, 2021

Analysis of 260 million years of major geological events finds recurring clusters 27.5 million years apart.

Geologic activity on Earth appears to follow a 27.5-million-year cycle, giving the planet a “pulse,” according to a new study published in the journal Geoscience Frontiers.

“Many geologists believe that geological events are random over time. But our study provides statistical evidence for a common cycle, suggesting that these geologic events are correlated and not random,” said Michael Rampino, a geologist and professor in New York University’s Department of Biology, as well as the study’s lead author.

Over the past five decades, researchers have proposed cycles of major geological events — including volcanic activity and mass extinctions on land and sea — ranging from roughly 26 to 36 million years. But early work on these correlations in the geological record was hampered by limitations in the age-dating of geologic events, which prevented scientists from conducting quantitative investigations.

However, there have been significant improvements in radio-isotopic dating techniques and changes in the geologic timescale, leading to new data on the timing of past events. Using the latest age-dating data available, Rampino and his colleagues compiled updated records of major geological events over the last 260 million years and conducted new analyses.

NYU researchers found that global geologic events are generally clustered at 10 different timepoints over the 260 million years, grouped in peaks or pulses of roughly 27.5 million years apart. Credit: Rampino et al., Geoscience Frontiers

The team analyzed the ages of 89 well-dated major geological events of the last 260 million years. These events include marine and land extinctions, major volcanic outpourings of lava called flood-basalt eruptions, events when oceans were depleted of oxygen, sea-level fluctuations, and changes or reorganization in the Earth’s tectonic plates.

They found that these global geologic events are generally clustered at 10 different timepoints over the 260 million years, grouped in peaks or pulses of roughly 27.5 million years apart. The most recent cluster of geological events was approximately 7 million years ago, suggesting that the next pulse of major geological activity is more than 20 million years in the future.

Here is is a link to the original study

And the abstract.

Abstract

We performed spectral analyses on the ages of 89 well-dated major geological events of the last 260 Myr from the recent geologic literature. These events include times of marine and non-marine extinctions, major ocean-anoxic events, continental flood-basalt eruptions, sea-level fluctuations, global pulses of intraplate magmatism, and times of changes in seafloor-spreading rates and plate reorganizations. The aggregate of all 89 events shows ten clusters in the last 260 Myr, spaced at an average interval of ~ 26.9 Myr, and Fourier analysis of the data yields a spectral peak at 27.5 Myr at the ≥ 96% confidence level. A shorter period of ~ 8.9 Myr may also be significant in modulating the timing of geologic events. Our results suggest that global geologic events are generally correlated, and seem to come in pulses with an underlying ~ 27.5-Myr cycle. These cyclic pulses of tectonics and climate change may be the result of geophysical processes related to the dynamics of plate tectonics and mantle plumes, or might alternatively be paced by astronomical cycles associated with the Earth’s motions in the Solar System and the Galaxy.

Graphical abstract

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Richard Page
June 26, 2021 2:16 pm

Somebody may have too much time on their hands and a computer going idle.

On the outer Barcoo
Reply to  Richard Page
June 26, 2021 2:50 pm

As Albert Einstein once noted: unless an idea at first seems to be ridiculous, there’s no hope for it.

Zurab Abayev
Reply to  On the outer Barcoo
June 26, 2021 3:40 pm

Sorry, it was Nielse Bohr

Greg
Reply to  Zurab Abayev
June 26, 2021 11:38 pm

Sorry it was Niels Bohr

Anon
Reply to  Richard Page
June 26, 2021 9:57 pm

At least this this theory is falsifiable. Only 20 million more years to go before we will know the answer. 🙂

Last edited 1 month ago by Anon
Rich Davis
June 26, 2021 2:19 pm

Oh no, in 20.5 million years, we’ll all be k!lled!

On the plus side, at that point, fusion power will only be 40 years away.

Last edited 1 month ago by Rich Davis
Scissor
Reply to  Rich Davis
June 26, 2021 4:39 pm

I wonder if all the women Olympic records then will be held by transgenders.

beng135
Reply to  Scissor
June 28, 2021 12:29 pm

But “women” records will be abolished. It will only be lumped-together records.

OldGreyGuy
Reply to  Rich Davis
June 26, 2021 6:58 pm

Only 20.5 million years. I suspect that one of our green “friends” is already trying to calculate how much tax will be required to prevent this and if there is enough time to collect it between now and then.

/sarc for those who need it.

John Tillman
June 26, 2021 2:31 pm

The end Permian Great Dying and end Cretaceous mass extinction stand out.

The latter was caused by an impact, but there was also flood basalt eruption around that time, ie the Deccan Traps, caused by passage of the Indian Plate over the Reunion Island Hotspot.

The Permian-Triassic mass extinction was also associated with an even more vast flood basalt eruption in Siberia, but other factors contributed to the Great Dying as well.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  John Tillman
June 26, 2021 4:01 pm

I was going to write up the Permian extinction in Blowing Smoke. Had a near final draft, but hit the cutting room floor. The complication is that the Siberian traps erupted thru massive Siberian coal seams, so there was both massive eruption and massive GHG release from burning coal. Very complicated almost 1 my event. So not ‘simple’ like all the other Blowing Smoke essays.

Scissor
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 26, 2021 4:49 pm

There’s clinker all over the west, especially in Wyoming where outcrops stretch for miles and miles. I hate to think of that stored energy having gone to waste, but I suppose the burning of coal brought oxygen levels down to more favorable levels.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Scissor
June 26, 2021 5:26 pm

Actually did not know that. My draft data was coal cinder from NW China lake sediments, much closer. Says was a truly horrific event. The eruption must have carried the coal clinker into the stratosphere for it to have gotten that far in appreciable quantities.

Smart Rock
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 26, 2021 5:00 pm

Siberian Traps and related intrusions (i.e. magma that didn’t make it to surface) also cut through and heated up extensive gypsum (CaSO4) deposits. These have been proposed as the source of sulfur that formed the huge Ni-Cu-Pd-Pt sulfide orebodies at Norils’k and Talnakh. Wouldn’t surprise me if this also led to lots of SO2 emissions. Plus, with no scrubbing of the smoke, burning coal seams will also generate a lot of SO2. Most coal has a significant amount of pyrite (FeS2) which produces SO2 when it burns.

CO2 warms, SO2 forms aerosols and cools. SO2 also leads to acid rain (remember when that was an existential threat?).

As for the 27.5 m.y. periodicity, I’ll wait for a theory that relates it to a physical cause. I suspect that with enough massaging, randomly distributed events could appear to be cyclic.

beng135
Reply to  Smart Rock
June 28, 2021 12:33 pm

Planet X must have a 27.5 m.y. periodicity & brushes just past Earth. Of course, we also have to consider that Monster Zero (King Ghidorah) resides on Planet X….

Last edited 1 month ago by beng135
John Tillman
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 27, 2021 1:11 pm

I didn’t mention coal and gypsum for the same reason, ie difficulty in sorting out relative contributions to observed effects.

Charles Higley
Reply to  John Tillman
June 26, 2021 6:30 pm

The Deccan Traps were due to increased interior planetary pressure. This occurred more than once. But, when such massive scabs cooled, pressure would build up again. Finally, the lithosphere split into continental pieces and the Traps ceased.

John Tillman
Reply to  Charles Higley
June 27, 2021 5:02 pm

The Traps ceased when the Indian Plate, moving at high speed for tectonics, left the Reunion Hotspot behind and “soon” in geologic time, began colliding with the Eurasian Plate, raising the Himalayas.

Plate tectonics far predates the Deccan Traps.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  John Tillman
June 26, 2021 7:49 pm

The most recent contribution to this search for a cause blames nickel:
https://scitechdaily.com/new-geochemical-testing-confirms-cause-of-end-permian-mass-extinction-event-that-wiped-out-most-life-on-earth/

Another research project suggests (at least to me) that the amount of CO2 released by the coal wasn’t as high as usually suggested because, while the volatiles were driven off, much of the actual carbon was sequestered as inclusions in the lava. It was a process not unlike making coke from coal: https://scitechdaily.com/coal-burning-in-siberia-250-million-years-ago-led-to-climate-change-caused-the-earths-most-severe-extinction-event/

John Tillman
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
June 27, 2021 1:16 pm

I hadn’t seen the nickel paper. Thanks!

Shoki Kaneda
June 26, 2021 2:35 pm

Their conclusions may or may not be valid. But at least they’re not saying we have to live like cavemen to save the planet.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Shoki Kaneda
June 26, 2021 2:50 pm

Don’t be so hasty! There’s the Precautionary Principle to consider.

Reply to  Shoki Kaneda
June 26, 2021 2:52 pm

So very true.

We have so many “Graduates” coming out of Uni. They look for a source of money, & these days that is in Climate Change..

So how to keep that money coming.

Make a discovery.

” we found a ” I ndication of a possible Human Influence””

Lots of Wesdal Words.

If challenged they fall back on the IPCC favourate one. “” but what else could it be”

The ever hungry Media picks it up, & a indication becomes a fact

And of course the grant money keeps coming.

Vk 5ELl mje

Reply to  M.j.ellìott
June 26, 2021 10:24 pm

The important conclusion that it’s “Worse Than We Thought!!” must be included for full acceptance and career advancement.

John Tillman
Reply to  Shoki Kaneda
June 28, 2021 3:48 pm

Please! Persons of cave.

SMC
June 26, 2021 2:43 pm

Isn’t this the same periodicity as the vertical oscillation of the solar system above and below the galactic plane?

Reply to  SMC
June 26, 2021 3:56 pm

That’s ~35 million years. Full cycle, so half that between passages through the plane – still doesn’t match up.

I’m with @Hans below, though – way too little data to draw even a valid correlation.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  SMC
June 26, 2021 4:02 pm

No.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  SMC
June 26, 2021 4:05 pm

No, stated periodicity of solar system crossing the galactic plane is given as 35 Myr (27% longer than a 27.5 Myr period).

It does not appear to be a close fit.

James Donald Bailey
Reply to  SMC
June 26, 2021 4:30 pm

A little off. (Numbers are approximate)

230MYr around the galaxy
100MYr between entering spiral arms
10MYr to pass through spiral arms
70MYr for a complete oscillation up and down and back,
So 35MYr between crossings of the galactic plane.

Here is the source, an astronomer at Cornell
How often does the Sun pass through a spiral arm in the Milky Way? (Intermediate) – Curious About Astronomy? Ask an Astronomer (cornell.edu)

Reply to  James Donald Bailey
June 26, 2021 8:47 pm

Wups. Just rechecked my source – you are right, I was 50% wrong… ~70MY for a full cycle. (Not that it matters in this case.)

June 26, 2021 2:43 pm

Spurious, as based on just 89 events over 260 million years.

Reply to  Hans Erren
June 26, 2021 2:47 pm

Cyclicity in geologic events was previously known as the Wilson cycle and based on the final dimension of the earth and the speed of continental drift.

Scissor
Reply to  Hans Erren
June 26, 2021 4:58 pm

I found a $20 bill on the beach once on Marco Island, Florida. It was bleached from the sun. Decided to go back to the spot later and I found another. Their serial numbers were close indicating that they might belong to a larger packet or bundle. Unfortunately, I didn’t find any more.

If I had 260 million years to look, I bet bet I could find all kinds of stuff.

Felix
June 26, 2021 2:45 pm

There was a similar study way back in the 1980s, I think; 26M year cycle. I remember reading it in Nature, and it got a lot of flack.

ResourceGuy
Reply to  Felix
June 26, 2021 4:23 pm

There is a periodicity of flack studies, possibly caused by celestial mechanics.

rah
Reply to  Felix
June 27, 2021 1:58 pm

That 26 million year period is the same as those that believe in the Nemesis. The idea that since the vast majority of star systems are binary or triple systems that our sun must have a so far undetected companion, possibly a brown dwarf, that has an elliptical orbit that brings it in to the Ort Cloud every 26 million years sending a cascade of comets into the inner solar system.

The problem is that try as they might nobody has found this companion. The proponents claim this because of the very unusual long elliptical orbit of 1 to 1.5 LY at it’s longest range making it’s relative motion very slow and thus difficult to detect.

Though I remain unconvinced that we have a failed companion star It seems to me that there must be something of considerable mass that is disturbing the Ort cloud on a regular periodic basis, but what is causing it is the question. .

Tom Abbott
Reply to  rah
June 28, 2021 4:30 am

Maybe the James Webb telescope will be able to find a companion. It should be going into orbit sometime this year.

We haven’t found a companion to the Sun yet, but something does seem to be disturbing the orbits of some orbiting bodies in the outer solar system.

That 26 million year period for Nemisis is interesting.

DMacKenzie,
June 26, 2021 2:47 pm

And you can convince yourself there are streaks of heads or tails in random coin flips (every 4 dozen or so) if someone suggests you look for it…..

88C23E02-4EEA-45E6-8FC3-FA68582D062D.jpeg
Last edited 1 month ago by DMacKenzie,
Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  DMacKenzie,
June 26, 2021 4:21 pm

Likewise, the number “pi” has some interesting features:

“But, despite the endless string of unpredictable digits that make up pi, it’s not what we call a truly random number . . . But we can ask the related question: ‘Is pi a normal number?’ A decimal number is said to be normal when every sequence of possible digits is equally likely to appear in it, making the numbers look random even if they technically aren’t. By looking at the digits of pi and applying statistical tests you can try to determine if it is normal. From the tests performed so far, it is still an open question whether pi is normal or not.”

“. . . at position 768 in the pi digits there are six 9s in succession. The chance of this happening if pi is normal and every sequence of n digits is equally likely to occur, is 0.08% . . . Other interesting sequences of digits have also been found. At position 17,387,594,880 you find the sequence 0123456789, and surprisingly earlier at position 60 you find these ten digits in a scrambled order.

— source of above italicized quotes: https://theconversation.com/pi-might-look-random-but-its-full-of-hidden-patterns-55994

Ah, the joys of having a thinking mind that tries to make sense out of chaos!

Scissor
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 26, 2021 5:01 pm

Based on the low probability of occurrence of six 9s in succession, is this possibly due to global warming?

Jean Parisot
Reply to  Scissor
June 26, 2021 6:52 pm

CO2 can do amazing things.

Rainer Bensch
Reply to  Scissor
June 27, 2021 3:40 am

When writing pi as base 8 number you would
1) get rid of this problem
2) have a higher probability of successive 7s
/s

Rich Davis
Reply to  Scissor
June 27, 2021 6:23 am

Settled Science, duh!

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Scissor
June 27, 2021 9:19 am

Scissor, thanks for posing that most-excellent question!

joel
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 26, 2021 5:45 pm

From the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:
In an infinite universe, everything is not only possible, but probable.

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 26, 2021 8:50 pm

Really don’t even need a “thinking” mind – we evolved to seek patterns in all things. Which is almost always quite useful for survival, except when we see patterns that are not there.

On the outer Barcoo
June 26, 2021 2:48 pm

Henrik Svensmark and Nir Shaviv noted (in “The Cloud Mystery” on YouTube) that the sun completes one lap of the Milky Way galaxy every ~250 my.

P Wells
Reply to  On the outer Barcoo
June 26, 2021 2:57 pm

They also speculated that the events could have been caused by the solar system drifting in and out of the arms of the solar system.

P Wells
Reply to  P Wells
June 26, 2021 4:43 pm

Correction – the arms of the galaxy.

Reply to  P Wells
June 26, 2021 8:56 pm

There was a science fiction story many, many years ago (it’s here somewhere in one of my collections, but I’m not going to dig for it right now). The premise was that the solar system drifts through some kind of electromagnetic field that emanates from the galactic core in cones. That field suppressed brain activity; since we evolved while in one of those cones, our intelligence “power” was more than it would otherwise have been. The story has us drifting out of the cone – and suddenly becoming super-brains (among the normally intelligent; people considered to be morons before became what is now highly intelligent).

Interesting notion (and the story was well written).

jorgekafkazar
Reply to  Writing Observer
June 26, 2021 11:35 pm

Those cones exist. One is centered on Latitude: 38.907045 Longitude:-77.036735

Phil Rae
Reply to  Writing Observer
June 26, 2021 11:46 pm

The “screamies”…….yes! I read that book as a kid. A fun story and I’ve wondered whimsically whether it might explain the current outbreak of general insanity we are experiencing.

Richard Page
Reply to  Phil Rae
June 27, 2021 9:47 am

Nah, it’s the Minervan’s trying to mess things up for us!

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Phil Rae
June 28, 2021 4:46 am

“I’ve wondered whimsically whether it might explain the current outbreak of general insanity we are experiencing.”

The answer is we now live in an era of instant communication, and that instant communication is lying to millions of people and creating a crisis atmsphere which then causes the psychopaths in society to be overwrought and they react violently.

The “general insanity” is being caused delibertely by the Left as a means of destroying Western Democracy, so they can replace it with themselves.

The Left has control of the means of communication so they can, and do, do great damage to society.

Too many people are easily misled, and when the Voice of Authority, the News Media, lies to them continuously, we get the situation we have now.

We are living in a Leftwing, Propaganda-Driven World. The horrible picture they create is a lie, but some people don’t know that, and then react inappropriately because they don’t know any better.

Leftwing propaganda is a Crime Against Humanity.

Scissor
Reply to  On the outer Barcoo
June 26, 2021 5:02 pm

How many miles?

Rob_Dawg
June 26, 2021 2:56 pm

Pareidolia

MarkW
June 26, 2021 2:59 pm

I see two strong peaks, and the rest pretty much looks like noise.

June 26, 2021 3:11 pm

“The most recent cluster of geological events was approximately 7 million years ago, suggesting that the next pulse of major geological activity is more than 20 million years in the future.”

Does this mean that we can now stop referring to the PETM 55.5 MYA as an analogue for the “Climate Crisis”?

Let’s do the math 55.5-(27.5 * 2) = 0.5 My

Phew, just missed by 500,000 years.
That’s not what they were referring to?
Oh sorry. My bad.

Gregory Woods
June 26, 2021 3:23 pm

Do they have a date yet for our next existential extinction?

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Gregory Woods
June 26, 2021 4:24 pm

Ummmm, Gregory . . . would that be: as compared to our next non-existential extinction?

ScarletMacaw
Reply to  Gregory Woods
June 26, 2021 4:25 pm

The US Congress is voting on August 6th for a new federal holiday, “Extinction Day” which would conveniently fill the gap between Independence Day and Labor Day.

/sarc

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  ScarletMacaw
June 26, 2021 4:51 pm

ScarletMacaw, appreciate that!

However, might “Extinction Day” already be the intellectual property of Milliways . . . better known as the five-star Restaurant at the End of the Universe, situated at the end of time and matter (credit due to Douglas Adams).

Scissor
Reply to  ScarletMacaw
June 26, 2021 5:08 pm

Sounds like a good day to barbecue rare animals from Madagascar and Papua New Guinea.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Gregory Woods
June 28, 2021 4:56 am

I think the next existential threat coming our way is scheduled for the year 2030. That’s what our Climate Czar John Kerry says. He says we only have nine years left before Climate Catastrophe.

Rud Istvan
June 26, 2021 3:43 pm

I just spent a fun hour researching this paper over a (needed) stiff bourbon. There are erie similarities to climatastrophe. Same authors over and over, same ‘junk’ conclusions drawn repeatedly from different suspect data sets… What got this new reported was they did a statistical meta analysis of their previously disputed stuff that is supposedly more robust—not.

My reasoning was simple. If the most recent cluster of ‘Earth pulse’ bad stuff was 7mya, how come I never heard about any of it before? So what was their paper’s 7mya bad stuff?

Started with the new paper itself, available not under paywall. The gold is in Table 1 and its footnotes. The table is stratified by age, so the first row is just 10mya to now. So should list all the 7mya bad stuff amongst the 89 total bad stuffs over the most recent 260 million years. Table 1 sites 4 different most recent bad stuffs:
-Marine extinctions 2.6mya, citing Sepkoste 2002
-Sequence boundaries 5.3mya, citing Embry 2018
-Non-marine tetrapod extinctions 7.25mya, citing Rampino 2019
-Interplate volcanism (no date), citing Mjelde 2010.

Bingo. Look up those four papers to understand the statistical bad stuff even tho not all around 7mya. So I did.

Sepkoste 2002 is mainly a fossil marine generic taxonomy, with all 26 taxa dating to at least 20mya emergence. That is a problem, because there are no genera extinctions since then. Maybe dig deeper on species? Nope, let’s quick check the other three categories first.

Embry 2018 is mostly about oil exploration geology. Unfortunately, there are NO oil deposits about 7mya (let alone the five claimed in Table 1)—(although California’s Monterrey shale did form only 15mya, and its overlying Kern River crude reservoirs only formed about 4mya, all explained in essay Reserve Reservations in ebook Blowing Smoke). Not looking good, the ‘science’ in this new meta-analysis.

Non-Marine extinctions of tetrapods. Now, all four limbed creatures are tetrapods. And there have been several past mass extinctions of them—dinosaurs come readily to mind, but that wasn’t 7mya. So I diligently searched for tetrapods extinctions in the last 10mya from other authors, since Rampino is an author on this new paper. Nothing. Zip Nada in the scientific literature. So Rampino tetrapods are maybe like Mann’s strip bark bristlecones when it comes to his ‘data’.

Finally, interplate volcanism. Mjelde 2010 is an interesting read. Except his paper mainly concerns the Cenozoic, just a bit early for the Miocene. Ouch.

Another example of published, peer reviewed, junk science, by ‘authors’ having made the same discredited claims differently for years and years. Piling it all together and then doing some macrostatistics doesn’t make it right, any more than the infamous MBE1999 hockey stick.

Richard Page
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 26, 2021 8:43 pm

So, would you say this might be someone with too much time on their hands and a computer going idle, perhaps?

John Tillman
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 27, 2021 1:36 pm

There was a Late Miocene extinction event. Among its victims were the European great apes, the last of whom disappeared about 7 Ma. That’s around the time that hominins split from the chimp line, and for the same reason, the spread of grasslands and loss of woodlands due to global cooling.

However Miocene extinctions started about 14 Ma. The Middle Miocene disruption, as it’s called, was coterminous with the Columbia flood basalts, but global cooling is usually fingered as the culprit. It has long figured in extinction periodicity calculations..

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_Miocene_disruption

Last edited 1 month ago by John Tillman
Tom Abbott
Reply to  Rud Istvan
June 28, 2021 5:02 am

“Bingo. Look up those four papers to understand the statistical bad stuff even tho not all around 7mya. So I did.”

And we are glad you did! This is the kind of quality analysis you get at WUWT. Making sense out of nonsense.

Philip
June 26, 2021 3:51 pm

I don’t like the sound of this. Those guys who are supposed to be studying our outer space for the next global extinction sized meteor to come crashing through the roof might think it’s safe to go outside and play Frisbee.

Gordon A. Dressler
June 26, 2021 4:00 pm

Just looking at the left-hand graph at the bottom of the above article, I can see indications of a ~27.5 Myr cycle periodicity from 0 to about 110 Myr ago, but thereafter (to 260 Myr ago) the periodicity breaks down and/or phase shifts significantly.

This observation gives me ample reason to doubt the stated claim in the abstract that “Fourier analysis of the data yields a spectral peak at 27.5 Myr at the ≥ 96% confidence level.” >96% confidence level? . . . hardly. >9.6% confidence level? . . . that’s more like it.

“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” —author unknown, but frequently misattributed to Benjamin Disraeli or Mark Twain

n.n
June 26, 2021 4:09 pm

The law of weak correlations. The same patterns are discovered and rediscovered in primes numbers. Perhaps some day; but, in the meantime, the plausibility principle is a first-order forcing of conflating logical domains, novel jurisprudence, and undermines scientific development through dimensional and channel diversity and redistribution.

a happy little debunker
June 26, 2021 4:13 pm

OMG, if we don’t act now to prevent this emergency- our descendants will suffer….
Wont someone think of the children????

ATheoK
Reply to  a happy little debunker
June 26, 2021 5:03 pm

Nope!
Especially in this instance, don’t care.

No emergency cited.
No future emergencies predicted.

Apparently, their only near immediate emergency is the lack of funding next year and who will pay for their super computer time.

Jean Parisot
Reply to  ATheoK
June 26, 2021 6:56 pm

Will bitcoining mining lead to cheaper scientific computing schemes?

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Jean Parisot
June 27, 2021 9:53 am

No.

Scissor
Reply to  a happy little debunker
June 26, 2021 5:11 pm

Need to lock down to flatten the curve.

Geoff Sherrington
June 26, 2021 4:18 pm

Why expect cycles?
If found, what use are they?
Geoff S. Geochemist

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Geoff Sherrington
June 26, 2021 8:01 pm

Geoff, that should be obvious! It will give you time to prepare and stock your shelter to survive the next extinction event. Remember the parable about the ant and the grasshopper by Aesop.

jorgekafkazar
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
June 26, 2021 11:42 pm

That was Abraham Lincoln.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  jorgekafkazar
June 27, 2021 2:57 pm
Olen
June 26, 2021 4:42 pm

Good to look at.
If its an internal force they should find it and if its an external force they better find it.

jorgekafkazar
Reply to  Olen
June 26, 2021 11:46 pm

Differential shrinkage as the Earth cools?

BrentC
June 26, 2021 4:47 pm

So, it’s worse than we thought?

😉

Charles Higley
June 26, 2021 6:28 pm

This makes perfect sense, as the initial breakup of the lithosphere into continental pieces appears to have begun 270 million years ago and Earth has continued to expand, episodically, every since. It is not joke that the oldest deep ocean rocks are only about 250 million years old, as there was no deep ocean until the continents started to separate.

This easily explains why Earth was covered with shallow oceans for the previous 300 million years, which led to the many and varied sedimentary and fossil-laden rocks we have on the continents. There is no other way for central N. America to be a shallow ocean for long enough to have huge coral reef deposits, as in Coralville, Iowa. When the deep continental splits occurred the oceans drained into the divides.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Charles Higley
June 27, 2021 10:29 am

CH, your statement “This makes perfect sense, as the initial breakup of the lithosphere into continental pieces appears to have begun 270 million years ago . . .” is definitely not true.

I can only gently suggest you view the excellent animation put together by Prof. Christopher Scotese, geologist and paleogeographer, showing the movement of the lithosphere (aka plate tectonics) starting 540 Myr ago and continuing to present day, which is available at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_iEWvtKcuQ (among many other web links)

Note that, among many other things, there is the interval between 200 Mya and 130 Mya when plate tectonic movement (and necessarily-associated ocean floor spreading) basically paused . . . I have never seen a proposed explanation for this interval of inactivity.

And as is shown in the animation, the plate that became Africa did not begin to separate from the plate that became South America until about 100 Mya ago, nowhere near 270 Mya.

John Tillman
Reply to  Charles Higley
June 27, 2021 1:39 pm

Supercontinent Pangaea started splitting apart at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary, with the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province volcanism, ie about 200 Ma.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  John Tillman
June 27, 2021 4:14 pm

According to the Scotese video I referenced above,there is the interval between 200 Mya and 130 Mya when plate tectonic movement (and necessarily-associated ocean floor spreading) basically paused

That is, Scotese shows no evidence of Pangaea splitting apart starting at 200 Mya. But one can detect a very slowly-developing separation of the North American plate from the African plate beginning at about 170 Mya.

Houston, we have a problem.

John Tillman
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 27, 2021 5:13 pm

No problem. Scotese’s animation consists of snapshots, not continuous action.

The CAMP, which rifting event began formation of the Central Atlantic, started around 201 Ma. It took millions of years before the rifting led to major inundation. Same process is occuring in Africa’s Rift Valley today.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Atlantic_magmatic_province

Scotese’s map for the Early Jurassic (195 Ma) shows the opening Central Atlantic:

http://www.scotese.com/jurassic.htm

Send him an email. He’ll confirm the date of the CAMP and formation of the Central Atlantic.

Last edited 1 month ago by John Tillman
Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  John Tillman
June 27, 2021 10:11 pm

No problem. Scotese’s animation consists of snapshots, not continuous action.”

Let’s just admit we see things very differently.

John Tillman
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 28, 2021 11:52 am

I see things the same way that Scotese does. Did you look at his map I linked? At 195 Ma, he labels the Central Atlantic opening up.

John Tillman
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 27, 2021 5:36 pm

Surely no pause at 152 Ma in the Late Jurassic, by which time the Central Atlantic had widened greatly:

http://www.scotese.com/late1.htm

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  John Tillman
June 27, 2021 10:12 pm

Ibid.

John Tillman
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
June 28, 2021 11:57 am

Here’s one of Scotese’s papers on the opening of the Central Atlantic:

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Christopher-Scotese/publication/264309703_The_Opening_of_the_Central_Atlantic_Seafloor_Spreading_Isochrons_and_Tectonic_Fabric_from_SEASAT_Altimetry/links/53d7f5f80cf2a19eee7fe805/The-Opening-of-the-Central-Atlantic-Seafloor-Spreading-Isochrons-and-Tectonic-Fabric-from-SEASAT-Altimetry.pdf

What you infer from the animation doesn’t reflect his conclusions based upon his research into the break up of Pangaea. It’s not a matter of opinion. You can read his own words and look at his own maps.

The Indomitable Snowman, Ph.D.
June 26, 2021 6:30 pm

This is an interesting result. The atmospheric system and the geological Earth itself are both driven, dissipative systems. Thus, they should exhibit 1/f noise phenomena – but given the long time periods that would be associated with such 1/f noise signals, they are extremely difficult to find… and there have been few reports of such things in even the climatic record (I’m aware of one such finding, with a period of about 800 years). So this seems like it might be a geologic 1/f noise signal with a stupefyingly-long period.

DocBud
June 26, 2021 7:20 pm

Gaia’s heart beats very slowly.

Clyde Spencer
June 26, 2021 7:39 pm

But early work on these correlations in the geological record was hampered by limitations in the age-dating of geologic events, which prevented scientists from conducting quantitative investigations.

Not so! I remember reading (Science?) about similar quantitative spectral analysis done in the mid-1970s. This group may have refined the age measurements, but they aren’t the first to do quantitative spectral analysis of the geologic record.

WXcycles
June 26, 2021 8:17 pm

” … geologist and professor in New York University’s Department of Biology … ”

A specialist professor of biology … who’s really a geologist? … wtf?

That does not scan.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  WXcycles
June 27, 2021 2:59 pm

He has all the qualifications to be a climatologist!

Alan
June 26, 2021 9:02 pm

I read this book back in the 80’s. Nemesis, by Donald Goldsmith.

RoHa
June 26, 2021 9:04 pm

It means we’re doomed.

Mike Maguire
June 26, 2021 11:08 pm

“The aggregate of all 89 events shows ten clusters in the last 260 Myr, spaced at an average interval of ~ 26.9 Myr, and Fourier analysis of the data yields a spectral peak at 27.5 Myr at the ≥ 96% confidence level. A shorter period of ~ 8.9 Myr may also be significant in modulating the timing of geologic events. Our results suggest that global geologic events are generally correlated, and seem to come in pulses with an underlying ~ 27.5-Myr cycle.”

To believe this, one must believe that scientists have the ability to pinpoint the time frame of numerous events in the very distant past with some precision.

Note that the cycle periodicity they give is 27.5 million years. Not 27 million or 28 million but 27.5 which suggests precision that doesn’t exist.

Take the random occurrence of events in any realm which is based on variables that are independent from each other and just like flipping a coin, you will get streaks of non correlated but coincidental events. It’s actually more likely than not to happen.

Unless you can find causation or an explanation for the cycles, they are as likely to be part of the expected coincidental streaks as they are to be from a legit repeating cycle that resulted from an underlying related cause.

Greg
June 26, 2021 11:50 pm

Hit any data with a heavy Gaussian filter and it starts to look “a bit cyclic” but that looks like a very irregular “cycle”, which has no predictive ability. ie there is no significant cyclic component.

ozspeaksup
June 27, 2021 3:30 am

well 20 mil to go
wont be an issue for me;-)

John Dueker
June 27, 2021 5:01 am

So this says we just passed a peak of geo events ~1 million years ago and its 26 million years to the next peak. Got it, I’ll let my homeowners insurance lapse for ~15 million years.

Bill Rocks
June 27, 2021 9:07 am

Subjective choice as to what is counted as an event?

Tekov Yahoser
June 27, 2021 9:11 am

The Nemesis Star is thought to have a 26 million year cycle?

Jurgen
June 27, 2021 11:52 am

“major geological events — including volcanic activity and mass extinctions on land and sea”

It struck me their research is about a pretty loose selection of large scale geological phenomena. OK, I am not a geologist, but does that matter? When your research object is that broadly defined, what is it you are studying?

It leaves me wondering whether geologists are agreed on, and are working with, a clearly defined set of “major geological events”, still specific enough to interpret the data in terms of interactions between detectable geological mechanisms.

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