Navigation Links
First plants caused ice ages
Date:2/1/2012

New research reveals how the arrival of the first plants 470 million years ago triggered a series of ice ages. Led by the Universities of Exeter and Oxford, the study is published today (1 February 2012) in Nature Geoscience.

The team set out to identify the effects that the first land plants had on the climate during the Ordovician Period, which ended 444 million years ago. During this period the climate gradually cooled, leading to a series of 'ice ages'. This global cooling was caused by a dramatic reduction in atmospheric carbon, which this research now suggests was triggered by the arrival of plants.

Among the first plants to grow on land were the ancestors of mosses that grow today. This study shows that they extracted minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and iron from rocks in order to grow. In so doing, they caused chemical weathering of the Earth's surface. This had a dramatic impact on the global carbon cycle and subsequently on the climate. It could also have led to a mass extinction of marine life.

The research suggests that the first plants caused the weathering of calcium and magnesium ions from silicate rocks, such as granite, in a process that removed carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, forming new carbonate rocks in the ocean. This cooled global temperatures by around five degrees Celsius.

In addition, by weathering the nutrients phosphorus and iron from rocks, the first plants increased the quantities of both these nutrients going into the oceans, fuelling productivity there and causing organic carbon burial. This removed yet more carbon from the atmosphere, further cooling the climate by another two to three degrees Celsius. It could also have had a devastating impact on marine life, leading to a mass extinction that has puzzled scientists.

The team used the modern moss, Physcomitrella patens for their study. They placed a number of rocks, with or without moss growing on them, in
'/>"/>

Contact: Sarah Hoyle
s.hoyle@exeter.ac.uk
44-013-927-22062
University of Exeter
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. UMass Amherst ecologists among the first to record and study deep-sea fish noises
2. Aria Diagnostics announces publication of first peer-reviewed data for new noninvasive prenatal test
3. OHSU research produces the worlds first primate chimeric offspring
4. UofL physicians, Jewish Hospital first in Kentucky to offer new aortic valve replacement
5. Simple blood test in the first trimester predicts fetal gender
6. Jeanne Baret, botanist and first female circumnavigator, finally commemorated in name of new species
7. Severe congenital disorder successfully treated in a mouse model for the first time
8. NIST releases first certified reference material for single-wall carbon nanotubes
9. Head-first diversity shown to drive vertebrate evolution
10. First aid after tick bites
11. Chinese scientists announce the first complete sequencing of Mongolian genome
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/28/2014)... developmental on-off switch for Streptomyces , a group ... the world,s naturally derived antibiotic medicines. , Their ... possible to manipulate this switch to make nature,s antibiotic ... 28 in Cell , found that a unique ... larger protein called BldD ultimately controls whether a bacterium ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... MD FASEB MARC (Maximizing Access to Research ... for the American College of Sports Medicine,s Conference ... 2014 in Miami, Florida. These awards are ... doctorates and scientists from underrepresented groups into the ... encourage the participation of young scientists at the ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... Dyslexia, the most commonly diagnosed learning disability in ... that occurs when the regions of the brain ... The use of non-invasive functional neuroimaging tools has ... dyslexia. However, most prior work has focused on ... a gap in our understanding of how multiple ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Small molecule acts as on-off switch for nature's antibiotic factory 2Small molecule acts as on-off switch for nature's antibiotic factory 3Dyslexic readers have disrupted network connections in the brain 2
... presented at the EORTC-NCI-AACR [1] Symposium on "Molecular targets and cancer ... 00.01 hrs CET on Friday 29 October. The Symposium takes place ... on the online abstracts from the time that they go up ... all the abstracts had to be submitted by 15 June, and ...
... Institute of Food and Agriculture awarded $3.8 million to ... at Virginia Tech to lead a multistate effort to ... United States. According to Tony Wolf, professor of ... create, refine, and encourage industry adoption of grape and ...
... Toronto, Canada and New Delhi, India, October 27, 2010 ... private sector companies on two continents have come together ... development of novel classes of antimalarials. This bold ... a deadly disease in desperate need of new treatments. ...
Cached Biology News:Abstracts for the EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium in Berlin go up online on Friday, Oct. 29 2USDA awards Virginia Tech $3.8 million to stimulate eastern US wine industry 2International malaria research consortium tackles deadly disease 2International malaria research consortium tackles deadly disease 3
(Date:8/29/2014)... 29, 2014 Pittcon is pleased to ... colleague Koichiro Matsuda, Horiba Scientific, have organized a session ... 2014. JASIS , Asia’s largest analytical and scientific ... Makuhari Messe, Japan. , The four speakers in ... from Single Molecules to Single Cells” will present their ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... August 29, 2014 Three Lawrence ... 2014 Hydrogen Production R&D Award for ... splitting water using sunlight. , Shared with collaborators ... the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), the ... models of photoelectrochemical solar-hydrogen production and corrosion processes. ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... (PRWEB) August 29, 2014 Intrinsic ... 13485:2003 certified, GAMP® 5 compliant imaging core lab, ... international Phase II clinical trial to assess a ... Throughout this trial, Intrinsic Imaging will provide comprehensive ... to, protocol and charter development, site qualification, site ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... 28, 2014 Best Sanitizers, Inc., the ... alcohol-based hand sanitizer, asks food processors and food handling ... hand sanitizer they’re currently using to Best Sanitizers’ ... is critical to fighting cross-contamination and the spread of ... believes there are key criteria that make a hand ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Fifth Annual U.S. Symposium at JASIS Organized by Pittcon’s Program Chairman Hub MacDonald 2Livermore Team Awarded for Hydrogen Production Research 2Intrinsic Imaging Awarded Phase II Clinical Trial to Assess New Treatment for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma 2Food Processors and Food Handlers are Encouraged to Prepare for Fall Harvest by Evaluating Their Current Hand Sanitizer Using Nine Key Criteria 2Food Processors and Food Handlers are Encouraged to Prepare for Fall Harvest by Evaluating Their Current Hand Sanitizer Using Nine Key Criteria 3
... A new Oak Ridge National Laboratory initiative could ... and also lead to more information about climate change. ... will be implemented in Gulfport, Miss., Memphis, and Charleston, ... for, respond to and quickly recover from natural and ...
... combining two materials to make a composite material with ... a mainstay of the marine industry for decades and ... carbon nanotubes (CNT) are getting in on the act ... for polymers in an ideal manner. , Researchers ...
... Calif., Nov. 21 Accuray,Incorporated (Nasdaq: ARAY ), ... that its president and chief executive officer, Euan S.,Thomson, ... Piper,Jaffray,s Health Care Conference at the Pierre Hotel in ... p.m. EST (9:30 a.m. PST)., A live webcast ...
Cached Biology Technology:ORNL 'resilience' plan to help Tennessee, Mississippi and South Carolina communities beat disaster 2Accuray Incorporated's CEO to Speak at Piper Jaffray 19th Annual Health Care Conference 2Accuray Incorporated's CEO to Speak at Piper Jaffray 19th Annual Health Care Conference 3
... Jouan MSC series of Class II ... conditions and certification to the world's ... ensures that the cabinets cannot be ... Natural lighting, low noise and arm ...
... The Holten MaxiSafe 2010 Class II ... ergonomical working condition of comfort while ... efficiency and performance.,Refined operator, environment and ... both exhausted and recirculated air.,Bottom filters ...
... designed for paramagnetic bead precipitation from standard ... plates with no additional accessories. The stand ... standard SBS 96-well microplate footprint. The use ... easy and fast (as little as 30 ...
... unit ideal for use in laboratories with low ... set at 12 rpm , Temperature control ... capacity of four 35 x 150mm bottles, eight ... , Consistent, repeatable results achieved with microprocessor ...
Biology Products: