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The Toba Catastrophe Likely Never Happened


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#1
Maximus

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These early humans survived a supervolcano eruption 74,000 years ago

Striking evidence means the “Toba Catastrophe Theory” is headed for the dustbin.

 

It's one of the biggest mysteries of recent human evolution. Roughly 70,000 years ago, Homo sapiens went through a genetic bottleneck, a period when our genetic diversity shrank dramatically. But why? In the late 1990s, some scientists argued that the culprit was a massive volcanic eruption from what is now Lake Toba, in Sumatra, about 74,000 years ago, whose deadly effects reduced our species to a few thousand hardy individuals. Now, new evidence suggests we were right about the volcano—but wrong about pretty much everything else.

...
 
The catastrophe that wasn’t
 
A paper published last week in Nature explores much of that evidence and presents a coup de grâce discovery that debunks the Toba Catastrophe Theory. That discovery comes from two beautifully preserved ancient campsites at the very southern tip of South Africa. There, in a cozy rock shelter and an open campsite, humans lived through the Toba eruption and thrived afterwards. University of Nevada, Las Vegas, geoscientist Eugene Smith worked with an international team of researchers to analyze the sites, digging down through many layers of habitation to see exactly what happened in the years following the supposed catastrophe

tobaexplodey.jpeg
 

Fascinating. The article goes on to explore new ideas put forward by scientists as to why the human population underwent the famed genetic bottleneck.


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#2
Yuli Ban

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This also bodes well for our prospects following a modern supervolcanic eruption. I mean, civilization would nearly fall apart, but we wouldn't come anywhere near the apocalyptic state pop media keeps saying we will.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#3
Erowind

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Yah but would be able to ever have an industrial revolution again or would we get stuck in a perpetual iron age? Given how difficult fossil fuels would be to access for future civilizations I doubt we would, industrial revolutions are difficult to pull off on wood alone.

Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#4
Jakob

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Yah but would be able to ever have an industrial revolution again or would we get stuck in a perpetual iron age? Given how difficult fossil fuels would be to access for future civilizations I doubt we would, industrial revolutions are difficult to pull off on wood alone.

We have plenty of coal, that should be sufficient for a future civilization to bootstrap themselves up to renewables+nuclear.


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#5
Erowind

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Yah but would be able to ever have an industrial revolution again or would we get stuck in a perpetual iron age? Given how difficult fossil fuels would be to access for future civilizations I doubt we would, industrial revolutions are difficult to pull off on wood alone.

We have plenty of coal, that should be sufficient for a future civilization to bootstrap themselves up to renewables+nuclear.

You're right but they're far underground, the vast majority of shallow deposits have already been mined. I don't have faith hypothetical future feudal kingdoms will be able to figure out there's stuff down there. Even if they can how do they get to it?
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Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#6
Jakob

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Yah but would be able to ever have an industrial revolution again or would we get stuck in a perpetual iron age? Given how difficult fossil fuels would be to access for future civilizations I doubt we would, industrial revolutions are difficult to pull off on wood alone.

We have plenty of coal, that should be sufficient for a future civilization to bootstrap themselves up to renewables+nuclear.

You're right but they're far underground, the vast majority of shallow deposits have already been mined. I don't have faith hypothetical future feudal kingdoms will be able to figure out there's stuff down there. Even if they can how do they get to it?

 

Well we don't need oil or coal to invent cars at least: http://www.lowtechma...d-gas-cars.html


Edited by Jakob, 02 April 2018 - 12:52 AM.

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#7
Alislaws

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I'm sure we've covered it before, but either:

 

A) The collapse of civilization includes the complete anihilation of humanity and all its works

 

B) The collapse of civilization allows humans to survive, and therefore does not destroy everything we have created. 

 

If scenario A, then who cares we're all dead its a problem for whatever sentient species evolves to replace us, and they may have millions of years for new fossil fuels to form before they get smart enough to need them 

 

If scenario B then we will probably not fall significantly past an early 1900s level of technology, maybe early 1800s if we lose a lot of books for some reason (like they are all stored digitally an then we lose access to our computers due to worldwide EMP or something?)






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