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Humanity’s impact on the Earth is now so profound that a new geological epoch – the Anthropocene – needs to be declared, according to an official expert group who presented the recommendation to the International Geological Congress in Cape Town on Monday.

The new epoch should begin about 1950, the experts said, and was likely to be defined by the radioactive elements dispersed across the planet by nuclear bomb tests, although an array of other signals, including plastic pollution, soot from power stations, concrete, and even the bones left by the global proliferation of the domestic chicken were now under consideration.

The current epoch, the Holocene, is the 12,000 years of stable climate since the last ice age during which all human civilisation developed. But the striking acceleration since the mid-20th century of carbon dioxide emissions and sea level rise, the global mass extinction of species, and the transformation of land by deforestation and development mark the end of that slice of geological time, the experts argue. The Earth is so profoundly changed that the Holocene must give way to the Anthropocene.

Continue reading:  The Anthropocene epoch: scientists declare dawn of human-influenced age

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14 thoughts on “The Anthropocene epoch: scientists declare dawn of human-influenced age

  1. Reblogged this on ~Burning Woman~ and commented:
    Credits to Robert A. Vella from “The Secular Jurist” blog. This is a thought-provoking article indeed. Makes one wonder how much longer can “mankind” as species continue to exist as if nothing it does matters, or makes any difference. If planet earth means anything, perhaps it’s time for all members of the species to take personal responsibility for its survival. After all, if the plant tanks… what are your alternative plans?

  2. I don’t know if this is true or not, but I was once told that man is the only animal to take control over and change his environment instead of changing himself to deal or fit in with their environment. I would love to get your idea on this thought. Hugs

      • Hello Sha’Tara. I would love to hear from as many people as possible. I love to learn and to understand. I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Thank you for taking the time to help me understand. Be well, Hugs

      • OK Scottie. My personal opinion backed by my own weird way of tackling life on earth. My understanding is that man is not a naturally evolved creature from this world. I do not mean man came here from some alien world, but that man was somehow “made” by such aliens for their own purposes (for good info on that see Zecharia Sitchin’s 12th Planet, the Earth Chronicles, and “The Wars of Gods and Men.” More and more info is surfacing on that topic, unfortunately much of it truly left field stuff requiring much discernment and more than a grain of salt. I go with what “feels” right; seems right and is backed by enough evidence that I can say, yes, this makes sense. The evidence of course is those planet-wide artifacts that simply cannot be attributed to man.

        Back to man and his problem. Having been let’s say, cloned, he’s an artificial life form. Much like an android, the world he lives on means little to him except as an exploitable resource. Since he was designed to extract natural resources for his makers (whom he called gods) he is an exploiter, user, extortioner, oppressor and killer – a predator with only a touch of conscience. The Earthian female was rendered fertile to populate the slave pool and having no natural cycles of fertility, much like the male is always “in heat” and can give birth non-stop. There is no natural balance, not part of the programming. He doesn’t have the natural or empathetic connection to his living environment to understand how he’s destroying it. Observation makes that quite clear, in my opinion and exceptions prove the rule. Anyway, you can take it from here if the direction interests you, or we can chat on email… shatara@telus.net or on my blog at http://shatara46.wordpress.com/

      • Hello and good morning / afternoon. I am just getting around to the computer. Well your idea is an interesting one. It reminded me of a short story I once read . The stories were based in a space bar type setting, either on earth or a space port. The story had different species from different planets. This story was about some beings in the bar talking about where life on earth came from. The tall blue aliens were sitting there saying nothing. Then at closing they told the bar that life on earth was there fault. See before there was life on earth they stopped on the planet and before leaving again they ….emptied their waste tanks! The twist and giggle of the story was the microbes that made up early life here was alien poo. 🙂 I will look up your blog later. I enjoy different ideas even if I might not share them. My wonderful husband Ron believes that beings from another planet have visited earth. I may disagree, but I enjoy talking to him about it. Be well and happy. Hugs

    • It is beginning to become apparent that we humans aren’t really different from other species. Given the right circumstances, all species will exploit their ecosystems beyond sustainability. Chimpanzees can be extremely violent, for example, and are known to wage war against rival clans. Our technology simply worsens the effects of this ecological exploitation by orders of magnitude. We do have the capacity to modify our collective behavior more than many other species (through social organization), although this ability seems to have receded in recent decades.

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