Fiery inferno at Permian extinction

Carbon rained from the sky

23 Jan 11 – It would be tough to blame humans for the Great Permian extinction, when some 95 percent of life was wiped out in the oceans and 70 percent on land. After all, that extinction – the worst extinction in history – took place about 250 million years ago, long before we dreadful humans even existed.

But hey, maybe we can tie it to global warming.’

Coal‑ash particle on the left from the Permian extinction boundary. Particle on the right from a modern power plant. Photo credit: Hamed Sanei, NRCan/University of Calgary.

“Previous researchers have suggested massive volcanic eruptions through coal beds in Siberia would generate significant greenhouse gases causing run away global warming,” says this article on

Now researchers at the University of Calgary have found evidence suggesting that “massive volcanic eruptions burnt significant volumes of coal, producing ash clouds that had broad impact on global oceans.”

“Our research is the first to show direct evidence that massive volcanic eruptions – the largest the world has ever witnessed – caused massive coal combustion thus supporting models for significant generation of greenhouse gases at this time,” says Dr. Steve Grasby of the University of Calgary’s Department of Geoscience.

The volcanoes, known as the Siberian Traps, cover an area just under two-million-square kilometers, a size greater than that of Europe. The ash plumes from the volcanoes traveled to regions now in Canada’s High Arctic where the coal-ash layers were found.

“We saw layers with abundant organic matter and Hamed immediately determined that they were layers of coal-ash, exactly like that produced by modern coal burning power plants,” says Dr. Benoit Beauchamp, a professor in the Department of Geoscience at the University of Calgary.

“In addition to these volcanoes causing fires through coal, the ash it spewed was highly toxic and was released in the land and water, potentially contributing to the worst extinction event in earth history,” says Grasby. “The char is remarkably similar to modern coal fly ash, which can create toxic aquatic conditions when released as slurries.”

Interesting that we find so much carbon at extinctions, isn’t it?

Scientists have found huge unexplainable amounts of soot, diamonds, buckyballs, and other carbon at the mammoth extinction of 11,500 years ago. They’ve also found vast amounts of unexplained soot, diamonds, coal, and carbon-laced black shale at the dinosaur extinction. And now comes this newly discovered carbon at the Great Permian extinction.

If you’ve read “Magnetic Reversals and Evolutionary Leaps” you’ll know where I’m going with this. I think that carbon was created in our very own skies and then rained in a raging, explosive, fiery inferno to the earth.

Carbon rains to the ground on Saturn’s moon Titan. Why not here?

See entire article, entitled “Researchers find smoking gun of world’s biggest extinction”:

Thanks to Benjamin Napier for this link

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