It’s near impossible to wrap one’s head around the hyperobject that is the climate emergency, but decisions like this help frame things. Congrats(?) to Crawford Lake.
This news reminded me that I haven’t been to Crawford Lake in years. We used to take the kids there. There’s an easy boardwalk around the lake, a reconstructed longhouse village (Wendat or Neutral Nation), and now, I suppose, swarms of scientists.
Congrats to the working group. I’m glad they exist and are thinking about this stuff.
I wonder why they have one designated spot for this task. I’d be worried about future issues that might make Lake Crawford less useful and representative. Wouldn’t it be good to have backup sites?
Makes me think of Contact. Why have one when you can have two at twice the price?
ETA: they did say “primary”, so maybe they already have backups?
From the article, they identified a dozen sites, and I suspect they won’t be ignoring the others completely.
I’ve been following this story and the most interesting part is that they chose the plutonium layer as the marker for this new epoch. They waffled about where to start it. Good candidates included the Industrial Revolution, invention of the automobile, etc. The hydrogen bomb tests of the 1950s won out though because you need a marker that can be seen anywhere in the world. You need to be able to look at sediment in Botswana or Siberia or Peru and say “this is the same layer in time”.
What’s amazing is that the H bomb tests left a plutonium layer that is detectable everywhere on the planet. It’s not in dangerous amounts of course, but the fact that those bombs blanketed the earth in plutonium is kinda fuckin’ amazing.
It might seem late to choose an event from the 1950s for this, when the Industrial Revolution was hundred of years earlier, but on geological time scales, those are simultaneous events. Steam engines and H-bombs. Same moment. Amazing.
Plutonium in my bones and not a single goddamn superpower to show for it!
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