Richard Bell's Wild West Yorkshire nature diary
6th January, 2007
I'M BACK just after midnight from what must be the shortest trip I've ever made to London; at a meeting of the Geological Society, at Burlington House, Piccadilly, yesterday evening, West Yorkshire RIGS, the geological conservation group of which I'm secretary, was presented with an ENI award for the Castle Hill geology trail leaflet.
Please e-mail me if you'd like to order a copy; they're £1.50, post free in the UK (compass not included!).
Spurred on by the success of the leaflet, which has already sold 900 copies, we're making a start on a rocky trail for Beaumont Park, Huddersfield, which is a mile and a half (2.5 km) west of Castle Hill (right, as seen from the park), on the opposite side of the valley of the River Holme.
See the next page for more about the rocks of Beaumont
After the award, presented by Steve Cooper of ENI (left) there was a talk by Stephen Hesselbo of the University of Oxford on Mass Extinction, Methane and Mudrock - Shocks to the Earth's Environmental Systems. It's amazing what detailed information can be extracted, via mass-spectrometers for instance, from familiar-looking rocks, such as those you see on the Yorkshire coast near Staithes.
The conclusions of this work are still under discussion but it does seem that in the past the Earth's climate has lurched from 'Icehouse Earth' to 'Greenhouse Earth' in dramatic cycles and it didn't always take millions of years for these changes to come about.