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Tuesday, August 07, 2012

The Rosenberg-Scott isolation theory

 Tongariro blows up last night after increasing localised earthquakes and just a few days after Whakaari (White Island) starts becoming more active and belching out smoke. But still we have the NZ scientists telling us there is no connection!
Everytime we have a series or swarm of volcanic/earthquake activity they claim they have nothing to do with each other... even though the same patterns keep presenting themselves each time. They haven't drawn a connection by now in the year 2012AD? Why are they being employed if they keep denying what is pretty bloody obvious to everyone else? They are being paid to wank about on their theories by the looks of it and then at the crucial moment of accountability they say they have no clue and they would never have guessed. What is the point of these people? A volcano only 200km away on the same fault line/plate boundary is going off and that doesn't affect anything else or isn't a symptom of something else... really? The system is totally interconnected and to maintain - in their doctonaire, dismissive and reflexive way - that activity so close together is isolated and disconnected is really quite a preposterous belief contrary to the evidence.

GNS volcanologist Michael Rosenberg has ruled out any link between last night's eruption and recent activity at another volcano, White Island in the Bay of Plenty.
White Island's alert level was raised on Monday.
Mr Rosenberg is concerned there was no warning a full eruption was coming.
"It's unexpected, but it seems to have been a fairly small eruption," he told RadioLIVE.
"This has taken us by surprise," says Mr Rosenberg. "It's gone from some little earthquakes that seemed to be tailing off, then all of a sudden this has gone boom.
"We really didn't expect that there would be an eruption apparently out of nowhere."
 Rosenberg just looks foolish when denying links to White Island. The reason he thinks there was no warning is because he and the people at the government science lab he works for are fucking clueless. They didn't expect something "apparently out of nowhere"? Most of the eruptions known in NZ come "apparently out of nowhere" following - surprise, surprise - a series of lead-up localised earthquakes and other tell-tail events... like Tarawera:

Te Ara:At Te Wairoa village, 7.5 kilometres from the terraces, people were woken after midnight on 10 June 1886 by a series of increasingly violent earthquakes. Around 2 a.m., a fissure through Ruawāhia Dome on Mt Tarawera erupted, and by 2.30 a.m. the craters along the summit were venting fountains of glowing scoria and a cloud of ash up to 10 kilometres high, through which intense lightning flickered. At 3.20 a.m. the explosions spread. Craters were blasted open on the south-west side of the mountain and through Lake Rotomahana and the Waimangu area. A 17-kilometre rift spewed steam, mud and ash. The eruptions were over by about 6 a.m.

Wikipedia:Shortly after midnight on the morning of 10 June 1886, a series of more than 30 increasingly strong earthquakes were felt in the Rotorua area and an unusual sheet lightning display was observed from the direction of Tarawera. At around 2:00 am[1] a larger earthquake was felt and followed by the sound of an explosion. By 2:30 am Mount Tarawera's three peaks had erupted, blasting three distinct columns of smoke and ash thousands of metres into the sky. At around 3.30 am, the largest phase of the eruption commenced; vents at Rotomahana produced a pyroclastic surge that destroyed several villages within a 6 kilometre radius, and the Pink and White Terraces appeared to be obliterated.

And - to a lesser extent - like Ruapehu.

Whilst I can acknowledge that the volcanologists aren't just there to provide prediction models, when they keep denying the links and the direct relationships that must exist along a relatively small area of the Earth's crust there seems no possibility they will ever arrive at a suitable model. So really, what is the point of these scientists? Just to tell us after the event what happened - which we all know anyway! Useless. Oh, and in TOTALLY UNRELATED news today:

The alert level for volcanic eruptions on White Island in the Bay of Plenty has been raised to two.
An eruption on Sunday followed a volcanic earthquake the weekend before and an increase in sulphur gases and the lake level.
The general manager of natural resource operations at the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Warwick Murray, says GNS does not know whether the increased seismic activity is connected to the Tongariro eruption.
He says it follows two years of relative quiet at White Island.

Two years of relative inactivity and then just a few days before Tongariro blows Whakaari starts belching... but there's no relationship, it's all some sort of an isolated and unrelated coincidence. What would the Council worker know, eh? He's not a proper scientist.

UPDATE: 11:15am

10.53am - Brad Scott of GNS has said the eruption was a steam-driven eruption, which came from the hydrothermal system rather than from new molten lava coming to the surface. A fly-over the mountain confirmed it was a steam plume only and there was no discolouration of the plume.
"We've had a small-scale volcanic eruption. It appears to be driven in the hydrothermal rather than the magmatic process, there's been an ash plume, there's been ash-fall down wind.''
10.43am - Brad Scott of GNS tells a press conference it was just a coincidence that White Island and Mt Tongariro erupted within the same week. 

Brad is another proper scientist from the government lab and gives the same story - no links, nothing to see here, move along. He's going off their standard presumptions more than anything because there is no survey yet.

So, a volcanic eruption that has nothing to do with magma or lava... apparently. Another first for NZ science? Next they'll be saying it has nothing to do with tectonic plates either. All those volcanoes in that string are just isolated, random and unconnected mountains that just happen to be in the same area.


At 7/8/12 11:05 am, Blogger Rupert said...

If you can't tell the difference between two events 7.5km and 3 hours apart (connected) and two events 200km and 48 hours apart (not connected) you really shouldn't be criticising the people who can.

There's really no difference between your statements here and the statements of climate change deniers, other than the field of science being ridiculed by those who have not studied the phenomena in question.

At 7/8/12 11:49 am, Blogger Riroriro said...

Yer right of course. What would those sciency folk know?
Perhaps you could liaise with Ken Ring...

At 7/8/12 1:17 pm, Blogger Ben said...

What a steaming pile of bullshit this post is.

Of course the events are "related" on a geological timescale, in that they all occurred on the Earth's crust, which is continually active.

However to say that Tongariro and White Island individual eruptive events are related is utterly wrong.

Where is this "contrary evidence" you speak of? Show me the timeline of White Island events and how they correlate to Tongariro/Ruapehu events please?

And of course volcanic activity is ultimately related to magma, in that magma heats steam which then erupts. To say it is not a magma eruption is entirely correct. This is why scientific reporting is so fraught.

Scientists are accurate. Reporters (and bloggers) are emotive.

At 7/8/12 2:06 pm, Blogger Tim Selwyn said...

Correction: The Rosenberg-Scott isolation theory.

Isn't it far more appropriate to equate climate change deniers with those volcanologists who espouse the isolation theory? They are the ones doing all the denial.

Everyone loves to criticise Ken Ring but he was the only one to make a hard and precise (24 hours)prediction about the Canterbury earthquakes... and it turned out correct - much to the chagrin of the TV reporters who had been mocking the prediction all day until that evening when it struck. Ring simply makes the observation that the moon has an undeniable and massive influence on the body of water around the Earth - now does it really seem so unbelievable that the same moon might also have an effect on the liquid mass of magma just under the surface of the Earth? It sounds reasonable.

You start from the premise that two events (closely linked in time and space) are isolated and unconnected... and then your conclusion is that scientists are accurate!? The timeline of events for the two are not available together because the GNS crew don't want to correlate them because they run with their isolation theory and it ends there. And then you repeat it as if it were a fact. That's not very sciency of you. The contrary evidence is everywhere: each time you get two or three in a row they say it is unrelated and each time major quakes and volcanoes go off around the Pacific rim simultaneously they say its just a coincidence(How many times does this have to happen before they review their theory?) How very reassuring it must be to trust the scientists without question. How very convenient it is for the scientists to promote the proposition that things are unrelated and that they can't know or draw inferences... I guess that means more funding to help them figure it out, eh?

At 7/8/12 2:07 pm, Blogger Tim said...

besides which: Calm Down Tim! Jonky is still heppy en smoiling en waving en guaging with mainssstreem mead ya.
He's got it covered. What more do you want?! 2morra, Brekfist will go tear, the luvly Petra will noost ear sprits, or terntivly thet Tarny Street beauty, AND .... if you don't like that, then there's 3, or better still if you're a trendy libril bleeding hart - Mournung Riport.

( they wonder why people are still leaving in drives! )

At 7/8/12 2:16 pm, Blogger Ben said...

Tim, on Ken Ring, he is a bullshitter of the highest order: http://www.ben.geek.nz/2011/03/earthquake-prediction/

At 7/8/12 2:29 pm, Blogger Rupert said...

Not really. In both cases you have some people who've spent their entire lives trying to understand a physical phenomenon coming to one conclusion, and some people with no expertise in the matter coming to the opposite conclusion.

It's not unbelievable that the moon affects the mantle. The moon affects the crust, too. You can do the math, it's quite simple, and the effect turns out to be really small. You can also look at the history of earthquakes and find that there is no correlation between the number or severity of earthquakes and the position of the moon.

At 7/8/12 2:39 pm, OpenID lauriefleming said...

Which of the Christchurch earthquakes did Ken Ring predict? And which ones did he have no idea about? The moon has no influence on earthquakes other than a very slight effect based on higher tides. A very slight effect. What Ring says may *sound* reasonable, but very few if any geologists agree with him.

I'm waiting for you to say "It's just a theory", because you think that a theory is a lesser thing than a fact.

How very unsciencey of you.

At 7/8/12 2:45 pm, Blogger The Contrarian said...

Ken Ring is a charlatan. For all his predictions has he ever been correct?

Links or it didn't happen.

At 7/8/12 2:50 pm, Blogger Rupert said...

Following up on Ken Ring, I went and looked up what he actually said on February 14th 2011:

Over the next 10 days a 7+ earthquake somewhere is very likely. [...] The 7+ is sure to be somewhere in the "Ring of Fire", where 80% of all major earthquakes seem to occur, and NZ is at the lower left of this Ring. The range of risk may be within 500kms of the Alpine Fault.

So, no, he didn't make a hard and precise prediction. Your 24 hour figure is off by an order of magnitude, as was Ring's figure of 7+ (it was 6.3).

At 7/8/12 3:00 pm, Blogger The Contrarian said...


Not to mention within 500km of the Apline fault is extremely broad.

Ring's predictions are a classic case of confirmation bias

At 7/8/12 7:33 pm, Blogger Richard Christie said...

Foolish post.


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