Miskatonic University Press

We're in the Anthropocene (almost)


“Humanity’s impact on the Earth is now so profound that a new geological epoch – the Anthropocene – needs to be declared, according to an official expert group who presented the recommendation to the International Geological Congress in Cape Town on Monday,” says Damian Carrington’s article in the Graun today: The Anthropocene epoch: scientists declare dawn of human-influenced age, reporting from the 35th International Geological Congress:

The exact break is yet to be determined:

The 35 scientists on the WGA – who voted 30 to three in favour of formally designating the Anthropocene, with two abstentions – will now spend the next two to three years determining which signals are the strongest and sharpest. Crucially, they must also decide a location which will define the start of the Anthropocene.

But it’s not for certain yet:

Once the data has been assembled, it will be formally submitted to the stratigraphic authorities and the Anthropocene could be officially adopted within a few years.

We can keep an eye on the Working Group on the Anthropocene but, like many such bodies, its web presence is out of date—geologically so, if you’re measuring at web scale.