What Became of the Indus Civilization?

Posted by M ws On Tuesday, March 19, 2013 0 comments
The following article by Rachel Nuwer on An Ancient Civilization, Upended by Climate Change highlights the need for all "to pay attention to “deep time,” or the very slow changes that accompany the deterioration of climatic conditions and resources, for the benefit of third, fourth or fifth generations.."

Excerpt from HERE:

The Vedas, a collection of texts composed over 3,000 years ago in India, speak of a mythical sacred river called the Sarasvati from which the Hindu goddess of science and learning emerged. Hers was a river “surpassing in majesty and might all other waters.” But around 4,000 years ago, all was lost when climate change kicked in.

That is the conclusion of a group of geologists, geomorphologists, archaeologists and mathematicians who joined forces to answer a question that has dogged scholars for centuries: what became of the Indus civilization?

This colossal civilization rose about 4,500 years ago, flourished for 600 years and then began a steady and relentless decline. Previous scholars hypothesized that regional strife or a foreign invasion led to its unraveling, while others suggested that environmental factors may have been to blame. The researchers who took part in the new study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, had a hunch that the latter theory was correct.

“What we thought was missing was how to link climate to people,” said Liviu Giosan, a geologist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts and the lead author of the study. “The answer came when we looked at the wide-scale morphology.”

Using satellite photos and topographical data, the researchers prepared digital maps of the Indus River landscape. They collected field samples to determine the age of sediments in the region and whether their structure was shaped by rivers or the wind. The information was then overlaid across prior archaeological findings, yielding a compelling new chronology of 10,000 years of human history and landscape changes, and what drove them.

The story goes something like this:

CLICK HERE for more.

If you have time, please check out THIS BLOG POST by Lubos Motl Pilsen, a physicist and also Fluvial landscapes of the Harappan civilization from the National Academy of Science (U.S.A.).

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