Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Forward Into the Past!!

James Owen of National Geographic is reporting that the Sahara Desert (which is actually a fairly recent phenomenon—since the end of the last glacial maximum) is going green. He writes:

Images taken between 1982 and 2002 revealed extensive regreening throughout the Sahel, according to a new study in the journal Biogeosciences.

The study suggests huge increases in vegetation in areas including central Chad and western Sudan.

Oddly, NG's own map of global warming simulation suggests that if warming continues the middle of the Sahara will be subject to reduced growing seasons. Right now, much of the Sahara has NO growing season. This will be a boon for agriculturalists, not the other way around. Time to update the map.

This tracks with alternating periods of lushness and dryness. Both Sahelanthropus and Australopithecus Garhi, which were found in Sahel and Chad, respectively, were in association with forested/grassland environments.

Now playing: Todd Rundgren - Initiation
via FoxyTunes

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