Digging deeper. Mine tunnels, deep sea drilling, sewage canals, subway tunnels, underground garages, shopping centers underground. The human being drills himself into and through the earth. This obviously already begins in the sandbox, or, in terms of Earth History, sometime in the Stone Age, when digging holes for the dead, for provisions or for prey, advanced as a cultural technique. Meanwhile, we manage to drill effortlessly through mountains and at phenomenal depths. Almost 13 kilometers downward. Jules Verne comes to mind. Notches, empty spaces, negative deposits that will outlast us by centuries, millennia. Singapore plans to store trash underground, Germany atomic waste. In Palestine, tunnels are used to move people and things. This used to be the case in the GDR as well. In Canada, the underground digging serves to comfort the consumer, affording easy access to shopping malls. The archeosphere, the zone in which human interventions are visible, is continuously extending. Small technophile moles that with the help of vision systems and other prostheses drill quicker and deeper than ever, leaving behind a clearly visible signature of the Anthropocene.
Anthropocene Working Group – Human Impacts and Their Consequences (1/3): Michael Edgeworth, School of Archaeology and Ancient History, University of Leicester and Dan Richter, Calhoun Critical Zone Observatory, 58:20-78:40