As many of you know, I often think on a big scale. Consider this posts to be another one in that line. Today I am going to talk about a type of geo-engineering that is both feasible and revolutionary.
Destroying parts of the Isthmus of Panama such to create a connection between the Atlantic and Pacific ocean that is at least 5 km wide and 1 km deep.
As some of you might know- we already have a small connection between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans through Panama called the Panama Canal. It is however too small and meant for allowing the passage of ships rather than allow the tow oceans to mix near the equator and change ocean circulation.
So how did I come up with this somewhat bizarre sounding idea? Well, as you know I have a broad series of interests in everything from weapons to geology and that led me, years ago, to something that most of you might not know about the Isthmus of Panama.
The land at its narrowest part of the isthmus is rather new on a geological time scale and was fully formed only about 3 million years ago. Prior to that the Atlantic Ocean was connected to the Pacific Ocean at both the equator and the poles. Consequently the circulation of water and currents in the world’s oceans were quite different from today. To make a long story short, the earth was much more warmer, wetter and greener than today.
Prior to the final closure of the gap between North and South America about 3 million years ago, ice ages did not occur. In fact ice ages as we know them today started around 2.6 million years ago. Similarly whales were plentiful even in tropical oceans and the main food item for large sharks such as the Megalodon who also flourished in those waters. Similarly there used to be forests in parts of Antarctica as recently as 3 million year ago. Even the Sahara desert was rather green before the beginning of the recent ice ages caused it to periodically transform into a desert.
The gist of what I am saying is that the formation of the Isthmus of Panama (especially its final closure) made the world drier, colder and susceptible to periodic ice ages. While you can partially explain ice ages by plotting long-term periodicities in the earths orbit around the sun- people cannot explain why these orbital peculiarities did not cause ice ages until the Isthmus of Panama finally closed up.
So how can we reopen the connection between the Pacific and the Atlantic? There are many options to do so.. however I prefer doing so with using low-fallout thermonuclear weapons. Why spend decades digging when you can do in a few minutes with properly placed high-yield and low fallout thermonuclear devices? A few dozen of these babies could easily create a canal about 5 km wide by 1 km deep and about 80 km long. In any case- the areas such canals would go through are almost inhabited due to the climate, topography and dense jungle growth.
The technology to do what I am suggesting is tried and tested, and the high-yield devices could easily be built from currently available nuclear weapons components. While there might be some complications such as relocating people in Panama, the increased productivity of the biosphere in other parts of the world would be many hundreds of times larger that destroyed to recreate the Atlantic-pacific connection.
What do you think? Comments?
Update: Have a look at this link. Basically my idea but on a much smaller scale.