Global Warming Traced to Volcanoes

Not by Fire but by Ice


Discover What Killed the Dinosaurs . . . and Why it Could Soon Kill Us


28 Apr 07



Ancient global warming traced to volcanoes

(To underwater volcanoes, I submit)

27 Apr 07 - Scientists believe they have solved the mystery of what caused the most rapid global warming in known geologic history, a cataclysmic temperature spike of more than 9 degrees Fahrenheit some 55 million years ago driven by concentrations of greenhouse gases hundreds of times greater than today. (No, I think the warming was driven by underwater volcanism. See below.)

The culprit, the researchers reported Thursday in the journal Science, was a series of volcanic eruptions that set off a chain reaction releasing massive quantities of carbon into the atmosphere.

The eruptions occurred on the rift between two continental plates as Greenland and Europe separated.

The event, known as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, was discovered in the early 1990s.

The ancient warming was sparked by the release of 1,500 to 4,000 gigatons of carbon over several thousand years, scientists estimate. 
                                                         . . .

     I think they’ve got it backwards, as you know if you’ve read “Not by Fire but
     by Ice.”  I think the warming came first.

     The summary of the article in Science magazine said the warming was “marked
     by the eruption of mid-ocean ridge basalt–like flows” . . . and that the warming
     began “after the beginning of massive flood basalt volcanism.” 

     If you have “massive” amounts of red-hot basalt - 2,150 degrees hot - pouring
     into the seas, you’re going to get massive ocean warming.

     I think this ocean warming released the CO2, and I think the same thing is
     happening today.

     It’s not global warming, it’s ocean warming, caused by underwater volcanoes.


See also Science magazine, 27 April 2007
Vol. 316. no. 5824, pp. 587 - 589
DOI: 10.1126/science.1135274
Entitled: Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum and the Opening of the Northeast Atlantic

Thanks to Steven Ehrlich for these links



Order Book I Q & A I Book Reviews I Plant Hardiness Zone Maps I Radio Interviews I Table of Contents I Excerpts I Author Photo I Pacemaker of the Ice Ages I Extent of Previous Glaciation I Crane Buried in Antarctic Ice Sheet I Ice Ages and Magnetic Reversals I It's Ocean Warming I E-Mail Robert at l Expanding Glaciers