Lightning strikes over Puyehue volcano in Chile (file image)
There is no evidence of a looming disaster coming from outer space. Image by AP PHOTO

Cataclysmic ‘cosmic cycle’ is kooky climate conspiracy

Tom Wark March 8, 2024

The leading cause of climate change is a cosmic influence occurring every 12,000 years.


False. There is no evidence of a 12,000-year geological cycle which affects climate change.

There are ominous claims a cataclysmic 12,000-year cosmic cycle is to blame for climate change, causing earth’s core to overheat.

This is false. Experts told AAP FactCheck there is no evidence of any geological cycle in that timeframe and the leading cause of modern climate change is human activity.

The claim is made in a YouTube video published in December 2023 by the Creative Society, which states it is “an international project that unites people from over 180 countries”.

The seven-hour video and its clips also appear in multiple Facebook posts, such as here, here and here. One clip has more than 300,000 views.

A screenshot from the Facebook video.
 The video claims a cosmic influence hits earth every 12th millennium. 

In the full video, a presenter says: “The threat that we’re currently facing comes from outer space. It’s not a climate weapon, it is a cosmic influence that occurs in our solar system every 12,000 years,” (video mark 14min 18sec).

They go on to say: “This energy from the cosmic influence keeps increasing, leading to the heating and the imbalance of the earth’s core. 

“The earth’s core has shifted and become unbalanced, and this has changed everything: the magnetic field, the earth’s crust, the oceans, the glaciers, the volcanoes, and the earthquakes,” (video mark 14min 44 sec).

Geological experts told AAP FactCheck there was no evidence of any “cosmic influence” occurring every 12,000 years and long-term cycles scientists had observed could not explain modern climate change.

Chris Kirkland, a professor leading the Timescales of Mineral Systems Group at Curtin University, said factors such as the earth’s orbit and axis tilt occurred in cycles and could impact climate.

However, they don’t occur in a 12,000-year timeframe and can’t explain the current increases in extreme weather events and rapid warming.

“While there are orbital or internal cycles that drive geological processes (responsible for our days, seasons, to millions of years linked to plate break ups and plate collisions) I know of no internal mechanism to drive a process on a 12,000 (year) timeframe,” Professor Kirkland said in an email.

A full moon (file image)
 Cosmic forces are not causing global warming. 

Russell Drysdale, a professor at the University of Melbourne’s School of Geography, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, agreed the video’s claim was false.

“The most obvious point I can make is that, in 50-60 odd years of detailed research on past climates, there is no evidence whatsoever in the geological record that there have been any climate cycles occurring at a period of 12,000 years,” Professor Drysdale told AAP FactCheck.

Prof Kirkland said the video’s premise the earth’s core was heating was also false.

“The general larger pattern is the earth’s core is actually cooling down (slowly) as it runs out of radioactive elements that produce heat, but this is essentially constant over human timescales,” he said.

Melanie Finch, a senior lecturer in geoscience at James Cook University, said the claim was similar to another climate conspiracy about the earth’s cycles being the true cause of climate change.

“They are referring to Milankovitch cycles – changes in the earth’s orbit that affect how close earth is to the sun,” Dr Finch said.

Dr Finch pointed to an explainer on the Paleontological Research Institution website, which states: “Milankovitch cycles are not the cause of the warming that the Earth is experiencing today … Milankovitch cycles lead to climate changes on the order of a few degrees in thousands of years; this is much slower than the rapid changes we observe today.”

NASA also says Milankovitch cycles can’t explain earth’s current warming.

AAP FactCheck has previously debunked claims about Milankovitch cycles (here and here) and from the Creative Society (here).

The Verdict

The claim a cosmic cycle occurring every 12,000 years is responsible for climate change is false.

Geologists have found no evidence that any cycle impacting the earth’s climate occurs at 12,000-year intervals.

Experts told AAP FactCheck human activity is the cause of climate change and the earth’s core is slowly cooling rather than rapidly heating.

False — The claim is inaccurate.

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