Tomas Pueyo Profile picture
May 9 16 tweets 8 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
What if there was a way to:
• Mitigate climate change
• Create more life
• Grow the economy
• And make money along the way?

Let's call it *Seaflooding* Image
The Mediterranean used to be a dry, salty, inhospitable hellhole before the Zanclean Megaflood

Thanks to that flood, we have a wonderful sea. Life, trade, and the economy have thrived on its shores for thousands of years

What if we replicated that?
We know what would happen:

Fill a dead depression with seawater
With more moisture, rains follow
Desert flowers blossom
As water accumulates, early on it turns pink ImageImageImageImage
Then it turns blue and green
Plants appear
Animals appear
An economy follows

Where can we do this? ImageImageImageImage
There are many hellholes on Earth that look exactly like the Med when it was dry:
• Below sea level
• So high pressure
• Very hot
• Very dry
• They concentrate salts brought by rivers that die in these hellholes

You probably think of one already: the Dead Sea Image
It's 200-600m below sea level and there's not much there: some salt harvesting, a bit of tourism... It's mostly a desert Image
You could bring water from the sea and flood it. This would mean:
• Electricity generation, given the huge depression
• Which could be used for desalination. Fresh water. Irrigation. More life.
• The area would get more moisture, with more plants & animals
• More tourism Image
So why don't we do it? Well, we want to!

Jordan had the Red-Dead Water Conveyance project, bringing water from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea.

But they shelved it just a few years ago.
It's on the border with Israel, but Israel didn't show much interest.
Why? Image
Because Israel had its own plan! The Med-Dead Canal would benefit from a shorter distance for the pipelines, along with a lower mountain range to go through

But Jordan is wary of more dependence on Israel
And this would have to go through the West Bank
➡️Nothing gets done Image
What if there was a similar hellhole that doesn't depend on any other country? There is! Let's just travel a few hundreds of km to neighboring Egypt and its Qattara Depression Image
The Qattara Depression sits in the middle of nothing, in the Sahara.
Sand, salt, and sorrow. ImageImage
The Egyptian gov had the idea of seaflooding it
This would have the additional benefits of:
No international discussions
A much bigger surface
In a much more desertic & desolate region
It would reduce ocean levels by 3mm
And 6% of global warming-induced sea level increases ImageImage
Not only that, but it would dramatically reduce Egypt's food scarcity—and hence political instability

Ecological impact studies have been carried out, finding no real downside. There are few local animals, they can be displaced, and + animals would come

Egypt should do it! Image
I've gone into much more detail in this week's article
Subscribe to the newsletter to receive my articles in your inbox—it's free!
Also, follow me for more threads like this ~once a week

Where else can we do this? There's a bunch of places below sea level. One of them is a no-brainer to me, and it's in the US

I'll discuss it—and some others—in this week's premium article Image
I see a lot of ppl think this is a good idea. So share it!

The more ppl know, the more they'll share. Soon, it will be common knowledge and governments will take action.

So RT the top tweet if you want to push the idea:

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More from @tomaspueyo

Apr 26
Starship is about to change the world, but ppl haven't realized yet

@SpaceX and @elonmusk's rocket will drop transportation costs to space

And in the past, every drop in transportation costs has revolutionized the world.

Here's what's going to happen: Image
The # of objects launched to space has exploded in the last few years
This is, of course, the revolution brought by SpaceX's rockets. Image
We can now make this happen because the cost of sending payload to space has dropped

In the 80s, it cost over $75k to carry one kg to space. Just carrying one astronaut’s body cost over $5M! SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy has brought it down to $1,500/kg

50x cheaper! Image
Read 23 tweets
Apr 20
The Mediterranean Sea was dry 5M years ago

Then, a series of MEGAFLOODS filled it in a matter of months

How did the Med dry up?
Why did it fill so brutally?
How would it have felt to be there?

This is what we know:
The African and European tectonic plates have been colliding for millions of years, forming the mountains of southern Europe

About 6M ago, water still poured into the Med from the Atlantic, but not through Gibraltar. Through what is now the Guadalquivir Valley
Fun fact: this flow helped form the Guadalquivir River valley, open to the Atlantic, so good for navigation that it was the base for the Spanish colonization of America. This is why American Spanish sounds like the dialect from this region. Details:…
Read 17 tweets
Apr 14
Maps twist our perception of the world
Here are 20 to rethink it:

1. Countries closer to the equator (~poorer) seem smaller than they are

(map by @neilrkaye)
Flattening balls distorts them! Image
So we develop a poor intuition for comparative country sizes.

The biggest loser is Africa, which is humongous: Image
Read 25 tweets
Apr 14
The AI debate focuses on risk, but what about its potential?

AI can eliminate most misery because it can eliminate all material scarcity.

Let's take an example: Food is scarce. Why? Where does food come from? Image
• Land, for growing, grazing, supermarkets...
• Raw materials, like fertilizer
• Machinery, like tractors or threshers
• Energy, like the Sun or oil for the tractor
• Transport, to get the food to the market
• Human workers to make all of this happen
But transport is just machines (trucks) with energy (oil, electricity) and workers (drivers, operators). One down.

And machines are just raw materials, energy, and human work. Let's take a car: Image
Read 21 tweets
Apr 10
Why is New York so big?
Why the biggest metropolis in the US?
Why are other East Coast cities smaller, like Philadelphia, Boston, or even Québec and Montréal?

Because of holes in the mountains and competition with the UK: Image
In a previous thread, I explained why Chicago is so big: It's the connection between the Mississippi and Great Lakes regions.

But these regions need to connect to the sea
The connection to the south is New Orleans, but that's far away

The problem is the Appalachians. It's a huge barrier across the continent.

We're in the early 1800s. The newborn US is full of vitality. It wants to bypass these mountains. How should they do it?
Through the easiest path: the flattest.

Notice something in this elevation map? Image
Read 18 tweets
Apr 5
The Texas Triangle , between Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio, contains 75% of Texans.

What's special about that triangle? Image
A map of night lights shows that ppl are concentrated in its tips and edge:
• One of its tips is the massive Houston
• Another tip is an uncommon type of city: the couple Dallas–Fort Worth
• Then there's a line of cities between Dallas and San Antonio w/ Austin, Waco...
Why? Image
What can the satellite tell us?

If you look carefully, you can see a green and grey line running from San Antonio to Dallas. What is it? Image
Read 18 tweets

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