Unlike many scientists, I embrace doom & gloom. It probably has something to do with being a Jewish New Hampshirite – the combination of “Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God” and “Jews in the Hands of an Angry Pogram” doesn’t make for the cheeriness. Maybe I’ll start a weekly Doom feature. In the meantime, have some more tasty doom!
- Estimates of sea level rise may be too low. A new study in Nature found that if global temperature rose 2 degrees C, sea level would rise 4-6 meters (12-18 feet). Eeep! That’s a up to a 1.5 meter (5 foot) rise per century! New York isn’t looking so healthy with just a 0.7 (2 foot) rise. Not my bagels! My precious bagels!
- Pacific salmon are swimming around Argentina and invading the southern Atlantic, probably aided by massive salmon farming operations in Chile. Since salmon are hungry mofos, they could starve out Magellanic penguins in Patagonia. This is somewhat ironic due to Atlantic salmon causing trouble in the North Pacific. Maybe they’ll make it home as the ice melts and the Northwest Passage grows.
- In preparation for the inevitable apocalypse (which may or may not be related to zombies), crop seeds from all around the world are being stored in Svalbard, off Norway. The Svalbard global seed vault is set to open in February 2008.
- And finally, is humanity doomed? A paper in Nature considers the probability of overpopulation, giant asteroids, and the extinction of the sun.
Er, Happy New Year!