Talk about your Tyrannosaurus Rips.
A new study suggesting dinosaurs may have become extinct thanks to their own flatulence and burping is being scorched on the airwaves today.
Radio’s Rush Limbaugh noted: “I want you to actually stop and consider this report, serious as it can be in the New York Daily News, that dinosaur farts and burps have contributed to global warming and their own extinction and I want to ask you if you really believe that … I want you to very seriously consider the proposition that there aren’t any dinosaurs because their own flatulence wiped ‘em out. They farted themselves to death and in the process they destroyed the planet, their own habitat. They caused global warming by burping and expelling gas so much, they destroyed their own habitat. I want to ask you: Does this pass the smell test?”
He continued: “The dinosaurs farted themselves to death, and at the same time burped themselves to death. And then after all that, caused global warming which is really what did them in. And then I want you to ask yourself this: Why is it that it has not yet been asserted that we humans are farting ourselves to death? …
“The point is, this is ridiculous. This is literally insane. It’s ridiculous. It’s absurd. It is one of the most stupid assertions I have encountered in 25-plus years of deep study of the environmentalist-wacko movement.”
According to the Associated Press, research published yesterday in Current Biology suggests large dinosaurs made a significant contribution to the greenhouse effect some 200 million years ago.
Study author David Wilkinson of Liverpool John Moores University in England estimated about 570 million tons of methane came from dinosaurs. That’s similar to total atmospheric levels of methane today produced by livestock, farming and industry. Cows alone now produce nearly 100 tons a year of methane.
AP cites University of Maryland paleontologist Thomas Holtz, who says it’s wrong to suggest the study blames dinosaur flatulence for their extinction. He noted the sauropods started showing up – and getting gassy – around 200 million years ago and didn’t die off until 65 million years ago.
University of Victoria climate scientist Andrew Weaver told AP: “Frankly, methane emissions from dinosaur burps is probably not the No. 1 thing we should be concerned about in modern society.”
Limbaugh closed his commentary on the matter by clowning: “If this guy is right in his research about all that flatulence and if the dinosaurs were smoking cigarettes, there could have been combustion all over the place. They might have something to talk about then.”