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> Mass extinctions - a threat from outer space or our own planet"s detox?, Full story at
Posted: Mar 10 2006, 07:01 AM


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The greatest threat to the extinction of man is man himself....
Posted: Mar 12 2006, 08:46 AM

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On 10-Mar-2006: KMC posted

"The greatest threat to the extinction of man is man himself...."

As long as such a large megatonage of nuclear and fission weapons exists and there are individuals who have the conviction that the outgroup destruction of human lives is such a vital duty, I cannot argue against the statement.

However, if there is ever, in the future, a major outpouring of surface magma such as that which formed the Siberian Traps, there will be a major life dieoff perhaps approaching that of the greatest mass extinction in Earth's history, the Permian Extinction.

I read of this in a book by vulcanologist Stan Williams of Arizona State University, "Surviving Galeras" to which I do not currently have access. He described a minor outpouring of magma in Iceland from a volcano named something like Rika in the 17th century. There was only 1 cubic mile of magma, but the gaseous accompaniment was so deadly that it poisonously killed so much of livestock that 15% of the human population died of starvation. In addition, the severity of winter weather in Europe increased for a couple of years.

The book's author pointed out that the Siberian Traps involved about a thousand foot thick layer of magma over an area the size of Montana. You can find the amount stated in the Leicester (sp?) University paper who URL is in the referenced PhysOrg news item.

There is a book enetitled "When Life Nearly Died" whose author, Michel J. Benton, attributes the Permian Extinction to the magma outpouring which formed the Siberian Traps. The Leicester University paper mentions that possibility, but draws no conslusion.
M. Tulloch
Posted: Mar 12 2006, 07:52 PM


The Deccan Traps are exactly opposite the Yucatan impact event.
They were formed at the same time.
The impact caused the Traps.
Get a Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary globe and put a line from the Yucatan event to the center of the earth. Extent this line through the the center to the surface of the earth. The line exits where the Deccan Traps were at the time of the impact.

Which was it - impact or lava flow? The answer is "both."

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