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  • Explosive volcanoes ended Earth's time as a snowball: Huge eruptions broke our planet's deep freeze

    01/18/2016 9:00:01 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 33 replies
    MailOnline ^ | 01/18/2016 | Ryan O'Hare for
    In our planet's early history, 720 to 640 million years ago, thick sheets of ice covered the majority of the surface, as the Earth was locked in a deep freeze. But explosive underwater volcanoes changed the chemistry of the Earth's oceans and were key to breaking the planet from its icy state, according to a new study. Researchers at the University of Southampton believe underwater volcanoes helped to thaw out "Snowball Earth", and even led to runaway chemical chain reactions, which created the conditions for an explosion of life on Earth. While much of the driving forces behind glaciation during...
  • 'Snowball Earth': Glaciers, ice packs once met at Equator

    03/05/2010 12:55:48 PM PST · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 49 replies · 1,056+ views
    The Register ^ | 5th March 2010 12:47 GMT | Lewis Page
    American boffins say they have discovered evidence that almost the entire world was covered in sea ice and glaciers at certain points in the remote past, during so-called "snowball Earth" periods where the polar ice sheets met at the Equator. It were grim in the old days. Geologists probing conditions seen in the ancient world have long considered that there was a cold spell known as the Sturtian Glaciation about 716 million years ago. However there has been disagreement in boffinry circles as to just how severe this glaciation was. Now, researchers from Harvard uni in the States, funded by...
  • Volcanic shutdown may have led to 'snowball Earth'

    05/10/2009 6:46:26 PM PDT · by neverdem · 22 replies · 1,074+ views
    New Scientist ^ | 09 May 2009 | David Shiga
    A 250-million-year shutdown of volcanic activity which is thought to have occurred early in Earth's history may be what turned the planet into a glacier-covered snowball. It could also have helped give rise to our oxygen-rich atmosphere. Previous studies have noted that very little volcanic material has been dated to between 2.45 and 2.2 billion years ago, but it was widely assumed the gap would vanish as more samples were dated. Now an analysis of thousands of zircon minerals collected from all seven continents indicates that the gap may be real after all. Zircons provide a record of past volcanic...
  • A Much Earlier Start for Animals

    02/04/2009 8:07:59 PM PST · by neverdem · 20 replies · 754+ views
    ScienceNOW Daily News ^ | 4 February 2009 | Phil Berardelli
    Enlarge ImageMolecular fingerprints. Sedimentary rock formations in Oman, like this one, contain chemical evidence of the planet's first animals, which appeared at least 635 million years ago. Credit: David Fike, Nature Where did all the animals come from? The fossil record is virtually animal-free up until the Cambrian Explosion 540 million years ago, and then--boom--thousands of critters of all shapes and sizes show up. The mystery has plagued scientists for more than a century and a half, beginning with Charles Darwin. Now, with a brilliant bit of detective work, researchers have located our missing ancestors. The problem with the...
  • Runaway Global Warming 635 Million Years Ago

    05/28/2008 8:35:51 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 25 replies · 1,718+ views
    A sudden and extreme case of runaway global warming 635 million years ago was caused by an abrupt release of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, scientists said today. The methane seeped from ice sheets that covered much of the planet toward the end of a frigid era called Snowball Earth. The gas escaped gradually at first and then very quickly from clathrates, or methane ice that forms and stabilizes beneath water ice sheets. As the water ice melted, pressure was relieved on the clathrates and they began to de-gas. The transition represents one of the earliest known cases of what...
  • Ancient Rocks Show How Young Earth Avoided Becoming Giant Snowball

    02/05/2007 2:38:10 PM PST · by blam · 31 replies · 765+ views
    Science Daily ^ | 2-5-2007 | University Of Chicago
    Source: University of Chicago Date: February 5, 2007 Ancient Rocks Show How Young Earth Avoided Becoming Giant Snowball Science Daily — A greenhouse gas that has become the bane of modern society may have saved Earth from completely freezing over early in the planet's history, according to the first detailed laboratory analysis of the world's oldest sedimentary rocks. A rock from a banded iron formation in northern Quebec, Canada. The bands vary in thickness from approximately 10 microns (less than the width of a human hair), to 10 meters (30 feet). This sample is measures a few inches across. At...
  • Earth Is Undergoing True Polar Wander, Scientists Say

    10/03/2012 3:31:34 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 40 replies ^ | October 2012 | Deborah Byrd
    Scientists based in Germany and Norway today published new results about a geophysical theory known as true polar wander. That is a drifting of Earth's solid exterior -- an actual change in latitude for some land masses -- relative to our planet's rotation axis. These scientists used hotspots in Earth's mantle as part of a computer model, which they say is accurate for the past 120 million years, to identify four possible instances of true polar wander in the past. And, they say, true polar wander is happening now... The scientists -- including Pavel V. Doubrovine and Trond H. Torsvik...
  • 'Snowball Earth' theory melted

    01/11/2011 7:05:08 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 47 replies
    BBC ^ | Wednesday, March 6, 2002
    Geoscientists in Scotland say they have evidence to disprove the controversial "Snowball Earth" theory - the idea that the planet was completely encased in ice just over 600 million years ago.We are claiming that in reality there was not a totally frozen snowball Earth and that even during the coldest conditions large regions remained ice-free -- Dr Dan CondonThe team, from the University of St Andrews, has published its findings in the scientific journal Geology, after studying rocks in the west of Scotland, Ireland, Namibia and California. Drs Dan Condon, Tony Prave and Doug Benn say they have found evidence...
  • Gondwana Supercontinent Underwent Massive Shift During Cambrian Explosion

    08/11/2010 5:32:45 AM PDT · by decimon · 51 replies · 1+ views
    Yale University ^ | August 10, 2010 | Unknown
    New Haven, Conn. — The Gondwana supercontinent underwent a 60-degree rotation across Earth’s surface during the Early Cambrian period, according to new evidence uncovered by a team of Yale University geologists. Gondwana made up the southern half of Pangaea, the giant supercontinent that constituted the Earth’s landmass before it broke up into the separate continents we see today. The study, which appears in the August issue of the journal Geology, has implications for the environmental conditions that existed at a crucial period in Earth’s evolutionary history called the Cambrian explosion, when most of the major groups of complex animals rapidly...
  • Caltech scientists predict greater longevity for planets with life [CO2 not so bad]

    06/12/2009 5:58:07 PM PDT · by Moonman62 · 13 replies · 364+ views
    Eurekalert ^ | 06/12/09 | California Institute of Technology
    PASADENA, Calif.— Roughly a billion years from now, the ever-increasing radiation from the sun will have heated Earth into inhabitability; the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere that serves as food for plant life will disappear, pulled out by the weathering of rocks; the oceans will evaporate; and all living things will disappear. Or maybe not quite so soon, say researchers from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), who have come up with a mechanism that doubles the future lifespan of the biosphere—while also increasing the chance that advanced life will be found elsewhere in the universe. A paper describing their...
  • 35.5m yr old global cooling caused by sharp decline in CO2 (Maybe cooling caused a drop in CO2?)

    02/28/2009 10:46:55 PM PST · by neverdem · 21 replies · 1,460+ views
    The Economic Times ^ | 27 Feb 2009 | NA
    WASHINGTON: A new research has found that prehistoric global cooling that started in Antarctica about 35.5 million years ago, was caused by a sharp drop in the carbon dioxide (CO2) levels. Even after the continent of Antarctica had drifted to near its present location, its climate was subtropical. Then, 35.5 million years ago, ice formed on Antarctica in about 100,000 years, which is an "overnight" shift in geological terms. "Our studies show that just over thirty-five million years ago, 'poof,' there was an ice sheet where there had been subtropical temperatures before," said Matthew Huber, assistant professor of earth and...
  • Arguments that Prove that Climate Change is driven by Solar Activity and not by CO2 Emission

    05/26/2008 4:09:08 PM PDT · by Delacon · 45 replies · 228+ views
    Canada Free Press ^ | May 26, 2008 | Dr. Gerhard Löbert
    <p>Conveyor of a super-Einsteinian theory of gravitation that explains, among many other post-Einstein-effects, the Sun-Earth-Connection and the true cause of the global climate changes.</p> <p>As the glaciological and tree ring evidence shows, climate change is a natural phenomenon that has occurred many times in the past, both with the magnitude as well as with the time rate of temperature change that have occurred in the recent decades. The following facts prove that the recent global warming is not man-made but is a natural phenomenon.</p>
  • Melting ice caps could suck carbon from atmosphere

    09/20/2008 8:48:29 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 17 replies · 364+ views
    New Scientist ^ | September 10, 2008 | Catherine Brahic
    The findings, from two separate research groups... say the process of carbon sequestration is already underway. Even so, the new carbon sink is unlikely to make a significant dent in the huge amounts of CO2 pumped into the atmosphere by industrial activities... Phytoplankton produce chlorophyll to obtain energy from the sun and assimilate CO2, and so increased phytoplankton productivity would remove more carbon from the atmosphere... From one year to the next, the phytoplankton grew more in areas where the ice had disappeared: less ice meant more open water for longer, allowing the plankton to soak up more energy from...
  • The Sun Proves an Embarassment to Climate Orthodoxers and Carbon Hysterics

    11/09/2008 4:35:17 PM PST · by I got the rope · 19 replies · 283+ views
    Al Fin ^ | 8 NOV 08 | Al Fin Blogspot
    The climate orthodoxy of carbon hysteria has never understood the intricacies of causative interaction in Earth's climate. Led by fanatics such as James Hansen and Al Gore, the orthodoxy decided early on to assign responsibility for "climate change" to human generated CO2. Orthodoxers reduced the complex system of climate to a single parameter--CO2--to make their job easier. Unfortunately, the orthodoxy failed to recruit (bribe and cudgel) large numbers of mathematically and scientifically trained men and women who remain curious about the underlying complexity of climate. Curious enough to continue studying climate as a multi-causative system. The distribution of sunlight, rather...
  • CO2, Temperatures, and Ice Ages

    02/02/2009 8:58:29 PM PST · by neverdem · 36 replies · 906+ views
    Watts Up With That? ^ | 30/01/2009 | Frank Lansner
    Guest post by Frank Lansner, civil engineer, biotechnology. (Note from Anthony - English is not Frank’s primary language, I have made some small adjustments for readability, however they may be a few passages that need clarification. Frank will be happy to clarify in comments) It is generally accepted that CO2 is lagging temperature in Antarctic graphs. To dig further into this subject therefore might seem a waste of time. But the reality is, that these graphs are still widely used as an argument for the global warming hypothesis. But can the CO2-hypothesis be supported in any way using the data...
  • Geologists push back date basins formed, supporting frozen Earth theory (basins in India)

    07/03/2008 11:08:44 AM PDT · by decimon · 27 replies · 78+ views
    University of Florida ^ | Jul 3, 2008 | Unknown
    GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- Even in geology, it's not often a date gets revised by 500 million years. But University of Florida geologists say they have found strong evidence that a half-dozen major basins in India were formed a billion or more years ago, making them at least 500 million years older than commonly thought. The findings appear to remove one of the major obstacles to the Snowball Earth theory that a frozen Earth was once entirely covered in snow and ice – and might even lend some weight to a controversial claim that complex life originated hundreds of million years...
  • Bacteria froze the Earth, researchers say ~~ CO2 saved it....

    08/02/2005 9:27:19 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 23 replies · 980+ views
    Marketwatch CNET ^ | August 2, 2005, 5:15 PM PDT | Michael Kanellos Staff Writer, CNET
    Bacteria froze the Earth, researchers say By Michael Kanellos, Story last modified Tue Aug 02 17:15:00 PDT 2005 Humans apparently aren't the first species to change the climate of the planet. Bacteria living 2.3 billion years ago could have plunged the planet into deep freeze, researchers at the California Institute of Technology claim in a new report. Several graduate students, along with supervising professor Joe Kirschvink, have released a paper presenting their explanation of what caused "Snowball Earth," a periodic deep freeze of Earth's atmosphere that has been theorized for years. The Caltech team argues that 2.3 billion...
  • Appalachians Triggered Ancient Ice Age (Smoky Mountains)

    10/28/2006 11:42:19 PM PDT · by Dallas59 · 31 replies · 2,918+ views
    Scientific American ^ | 10/25/2006 | JR Minkel
    The rise of the Appalachian Mountains seems to have triggered an ice age 450 million years ago by sucking CO2 from the atmosphere. Researchers report evidence that minerals from the mountain range washed into the oceans just before the cold snap, carrying atmospheric carbon dioxide with them. The result clarifies a long standing paradox in the historical relationship between CO2 and climate, experts say. At the start of the so-called Ordovician ice age, about 450 million years ago, the planet went from a state of greenhouse warmth to one of glacial cold, culminating in mass extinctions of ocean life. This...
  • Sea floor records ancient Earth

    03/23/2007 11:06:03 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 66 replies · 4,679+ views
    BBC ^ | Friday, 23 March 2007, 09:09 GMT | Jonathan Fildes Science and technology reporter, BBC News
    The ancient sea floor was discovered in southwest Greenland A sliver of four-billion-year-old sea floor has offered a glimpse into the inner workings of an adolescent Earth.The baked and twisted rocks, now part of Greenland, show the earliest evidence of plate tectonics, colossal movements of the planet's outer shell. Until now, researchers were unable to say when the process, which explains how oceans and continents form, began. The unique find, described in the journal Science, shows the movements started soon after the planet formed. "Since the plate tectonic paradigm is the framework in which we interpret all modern-day geology,...
  • Ancient Imbalances Sent Earth's Continents "Wandering"

    04/09/2008 3:28:18 PM PDT · by blam · 29 replies · 88+ views
    National Geographic News ^ | Continents "Wandering"
    Ancient Imbalances Sent Earth's Continents "Wandering" Anne Minard for National Geographic NewsApril 7, 2008 A new study lends weight to the controversial theory that Earth became massively imbalanced in the distant past, sending its tectonic plates on a mad dash to even things out. Bernhard Steinberger and Trond Torsvik, of the Geological Survey of Norway, analyzed rock samples dating back 320 million years to hunt for clues in Earth's magnetic field about the history of plate motions. The researchers found evidence of a steady northward continental motion and, during certain time intervals, clockwise and counterclockwise rotations. That pattern matches the...