How is the Weather… in Space? by Brian Simpson

A new report from the European Commission, JRC Science for Policy report, Space Weather & Critical Infrastructures: Findings and Outlook: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/bitstream/JRC104231/space_weather_cover%2Breport_final.pdf, has reported on the threat of space weather events on earth’s critical infrastructure. For our purposes, the report notes that space weather events, like EMP occurrences, can severely damage critical infrastructure, such as the power grid, aviation, navigation systems and communications. There can be cascading effects resulting in larger than expected impacts.

The report recommends that there be a multi-risk approach adopted to deal with this threat, with improvements in forecasting via better methodologies and the determination of the specific vulnerability that a system has to space weather events.
While that is fine, it seems that the human race is moving with glacial slowness on this issue, and if another Carrington event occurs – and Earth had a near miss in 2012 (https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/23jul_superstorm, civilisation itself will be threatened. Up to 90 percent of people will die off rather quickly:  https://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/jul/25/extreme-solar-storm-sun-earth; http://www.naturalnews.com/047399_solar_flare_Dark_Ages_NASA.html.
It is enough to make even me into a John Steele-style survivalist!

 

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Saturday, 31 October 2020
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