Measuring War's Carbon Footprint
Some researchers have explored whether warfare might be explained in part by swings in climate. But what about the opposite effect? Can humanity's skirmishes change the climate?
A new study in The Holocene by Julia Pongratz of the Carnegie Institution for Science says it all comes down to a trade-off between people and trees: when a brutal war or devastating plague significantly reduces a human population, forests have the chance to re-grow and absorb carbon dioxide, mitigating the greenhouse effect. Pongratz reconstructed global land cover from 800 AD to the present and modelled the carbon cycle for the same time period in order to test how land usage influenced climate change.
Research in plant neurobiology shows that plants have senses, intelligence and emotions.
- The field of plant neurobiology studies the complex behavior of plants.
- Plants were found to have 15-20 senses, including many like humans.
- Some argue that plants may have awareness and intelligence, while detractors persist.
Most people think human extinction would be bad. These people aren't philosophers.
- A new opinion piece in The New York Times argues that humanity is so horrible to other forms of life that our extinction wouldn't be all that bad, morally speaking.
- The author, Dr. Todd May, is a philosopher who is known for advising the writers of The Good Place.
- The idea of human extinction is a big one, with lots of disagreement on its moral value.
- In nature, properties of Particle B may depend on what we choose to measure or manipulate with Particle A, even at great distances.