Mass Extinction Revelation

When you think of a mass extinction event you probably imagine a giant meteor hitting the earth and wiping out the dinosaurs or the ice age freezing everything to death. However, recent studies have discovered new data that may change the way mass extinctions are perceived. A study preformed by the University of Edinburgh on a mass extinction event 252 million years ago has shown that 90% of marine species and over 66% of land species were wiped out not due to anything as flashy as a meteor, but rather due to the fact that the ocean become more acidic.

The big question then was why the ocean changed drastically enough to wipe out most life on earth in the biggest extinction even in history. As it turns out, massive volcanic eruptions are to blame. When numerous volcanoes erupted in prehistoric times the oceans absorb huge amounts of carbon dioxide. This shook up the chemical composition of the oceans causing them to become more acidic and hostile to most life that had evolved by that point.

This may not seem relevant today but researchers are using this new discovery to understand how excess carbon dioxide can impact the environment, particularly the ocean’s level of acidity. Due to the large amounts of carbon dioxide being added to the atmosphere every year, scientists hope that this researcher can shed more light on how humans such as Ricardo Tosto are impacting the environment.

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