The life on Earth had completely gone extinct some 252 million years ago. The fossil records of which are now being scrutinized for answers regarding the causes, extinct species, and following consequences after the horrendous devastation. The analysis has proved that about 96% of the marine life had vanished and something similar had also happened on the land. To date, the cause for the massive Permian Period extinction or the episode known as the Great Dying is still unclear. A series of volcanic eruptions have known to cause the destruction events which killed almost every living entity and also brought about the drastic climatic plus environmental changes which the scientists presently are trying to find answers for.
The unexpected surging of the ocean acidity, sulfur plus other toxins, and ocean temperature rise are some of the questions the scientists believe to have killed marine life or poisoned the water. The researchers from the University of Washington and Stanford University have developed a new model which points the sudden rise in ocean temperatures to be blamed. This complex simulation triggered the warming incident which at the same time accelerated the metabolism of ocean species and in turn declined oxygen levels. The depletion of oxygen, asphyxiation, led to the death of marine animals on a massive scale.
The new model helps to understand and predict the massive volcanic eruptions impact on ocean temperatures and similar impacts on marine animals. The primeval supercontinent Pangea is being simulated so as to ensure the model’s accuracy. The Earth system model is generally used to forecast interactions of momentum, energy, and mass between the atmosphere and ocean. The increasing of the atmospheric greenhouse gases in the model helped replicate the ocean warming and oxygen loss and its tolerance on the marine animals helped study the impact. The geochemical data from end-Permian age rocks and model’s data matched in terms of climatic changes which makes this Permian-era extinction model the first of its kind to be tested against the fossil record. Researchers from the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ) and Utrecht University have created a new marker (proxy) of prehistoric CO2 levels by making use of organic molecule phytane, chlorophyll debris. This new indicator helps provide a record of CO2 concentrations that is it even covers half a billion years.
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