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Geology in the Movies to screen ‘The Day After Tomorrow’

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The final installment of Geology in the Movies will take place today where the geology department will be viewing “The Day After Tomorrow” and critically analyzing it with a geologic basis and relevance to current social and political issues.

The 2004 American science-fiction disaster film depicts catastrophic effects from global warming in a series of extreme weather events that usher in a new ice age, but Ron Martino, department chair of the geology department, said he isn’t convinced this is possible or that humans are to blame.

“The earth does this on its own without our help,” Martino said. “We have compelling evidence that earth is the coldest that it has been. The earth was 16 degrees Celsius warmer 50 million years ago.”

Martino said he does not attribute global warming entirely to the burning of fossil fuels by humans. The Milankovitch Theory states that Earth’s climate is driven by astronomical forces.

“It’s very likely that it’s just natural,” Martino said. “The earth has been warming for 18,000 years.”

In the film, Earth enters an ice age in only six weeks, but the opposite occurs in nature, according to Martino.

“The warm ups are what happens really fast,” Martino said. “This happens without burning fossil fuels.”

Global warming and cooling occurs due to astronomical factors out of human control, according to Martino. The shifting axis of the Earth and varying distance from the sun have much more to do with climate change than anything humans have done.

The movie is based on a book, “The Coming Global Superstorm,” and takes a look at what the world would look like if the greenhouse effect and global warming continued.

“We are in one of those warming periods now,” Martino said. “I want to present both sides to the students and then let them decide.”

The movie showing will take place at 5:00 p.m. in Science Building Room 276.

Sebastian Morris can be contacted at [email protected]

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