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Toxic Gases Caused World's Worst Extinction

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posted on Feb, 4 2009 @ 03:37 PM
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Toxic Gases Caused World's Worst Extinction


dsc.discovery.com

Feb. 4, 2009 -- An ancient killer is hiding in the remote forests of Siberia. Walled off from western eyes during the Soviet era and forgotten among the endless expanse of wilderness, scientists are starting to uncover the remnants of a supervolcano that rained Hell on Earth 250 million years ago and killed 90 percent of all life.

Researchers have known about the volcano -- the Siberian Traps, for years. And they've speculated that the volcanic rocks, which cover an area about the size of Alaska, played a role in runaway global warming that led to the end -- Permian mass extinction, the worst dying the planet has ever seen.

Now a team of researchers led by Henrik Svenson of the University of Oslo in Norway have performed a series of experiments, showing the volcano employed an arsenal of deadly weapons during its 200,000-year-long assault on the biosphere.
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Feb, 4 2009 @ 03:37 PM
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So it's finally solved?


"This is the first geologically realistic evidence that ozone collapse during the end-Permian could have actually happened," Svenson said.


A volcano caused the Permian extinction?

Wow, maybe the Dinosaurs were killed by same method.

Makes me wonder what will happen if Yellowstone erupts.



dsc.discovery.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Feb, 4 2009 @ 03:40 PM
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I saw an interesting show on Discovery or History or TLC....can't remember the channel. One famous palentologist (the guy with the beard and ponytail...you probably know who I'm referring to) postulated that the dinosaurs were either long dead or close to extinction when the theorized asteroid hit the Yucatan.



posted on Feb, 4 2009 @ 04:08 PM
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There is an interesting comparison within the article:


Prime among them was carbon. Searing magmas from the volcano intruded into the Tunguska Basin in eastern Siberia, a region laden with thick deposits of coal, oil and gas. Heat from the molten rock baked the hydrocarbons, turning the area into the world's largest fossil fuel-burning plant. In all, the volcano may have belched as much as 100,000 gigatons of carbon into the air (all of humanity emits about eight gigatons of carbon annually).


The Siberian hell spewed 12,500 times more carbon in to the atmosphere than we do annualy. So it may take some 5,000 additional years before mankind starts to feel uncomfortable due to too much carbon in the air.



posted on Feb, 4 2009 @ 04:26 PM
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We humans have only been around for the blink of an eye as far as geological time goes. We have no idea what's in store for us in the long run!



posted on Feb, 5 2009 @ 07:43 AM
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Originally posted by griffinrl
We humans have only been around for the blink of an eye as far as geological time goes. We have no idea what's in store for us in the long run!

Well, we got the clue from Siberia, didn't we? According to the article figures, the super volcano released on average 0.5 gigatons of carbon to the atmosphere annually, as compared with 8 gigatons that goes to the air due to our industrial activities.

By some "sheer coincidence" the ozone layer at that time was running thin:


"There is evidence of a large number of genetic mutations in the fossil record around this time," she said, which could be the result of an onslaught of ultraviolet radiation due to a weak ozone layer. "But the idea of ozone destroyers is pretty new. The question is whether or not the eruptions were powerful enough to inject gases into the stratosphere."


Is it possible that the present hole in the ozone layer is linked to our industrial activities? Or is the hole related to Al Gore's wish to move into the White House?

Anyway . . . The increased amount of ultraviolet radiation interacting with the DNA od species caused large number of genetic mutations, and that's what is in store for us. Our DNA will get affected and we will evolve into more stupid species than we already are.

Here is another reference to the Discover article:
dml.cmnh.org...


A volcanic eruption that lasted a million years and flooded Siberia
with lava a mile deep may have killed 80 percent of the world's
animals-an extinction far more deadly than the later one that claimed
the dinosaurs, researchers conclude.


Now the activity lasted one million years, not 200,000 years, as the Discover article said.

I guess the ozone layer hole is getting larger and the mutations more numerous.






[edit on 2/5/2009 by stander]



posted on Feb, 5 2009 @ 08:26 AM
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I guess what I meant was that we as humans have been around such a very short time as far as geological history is concerned. I bet there are natural events that could spank us that we haven't even considered yet. Just a thought



posted on Feb, 5 2009 @ 09:14 AM
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Originally posted by die_another_day
A volcano caused the Permian extinction?

Wow, maybe the Dinosaurs were killed by same method.

Makes me wonder what will happen if Yellowstone erupts.


Don't let the title of "Super Volcano" deceive you. Yellowstone's largest eruption ever was about two orders of magnitude or more smaller than the Siberian Traps.

I must wonder why this is really new information. The Siberian Traps have been known about for years, as well as the Permian-Triassic extinction event.



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