Oct 31, 2014

Ever-Changing Earth and Its General History

Recently, Wisconsin geologists, both amateurs and professionals, calling themselves crater hunters, have been examining the evidence of craters of meteorite explosions upon earth's surface which was prevalent over other areas in North America back when Wisconsin and western Russia once shared the space south of the equator. It has been estimated that the rate of falling meteors were up to 100 times more than the rate today and with falling space rocks the size of a football field, hitting the planet every 10,000 years. The ancient bombardment occurred during the Ordovician Period.
Earth's geological history in terms of continental drift stretches out over a thousand million years with marked results in 500 million year intervals. Maps that depict these ages and drifts are an estimation. Each 500 million year interval was followed by about 100 million years of geological episodes called rifting as continents broke apart due to erosion and other natural phenomenon.
These geological and climatic periods have names, beginning with the Rodinia Period. It was when the supercontinents began to fragment. Life during that period would have been hostile to living beings with intense ultraviolet radiation because of the lack of a protective ozone layer. There was not much of anything to protect the landscape from forces of water, flooding a common occurrence. North America was a vast floodplain made up of thick sand and silt, life had barely progressed from simple algae and land was devoid of plant life, the landscape giving off a rusty-red color.
This late Proterozoic era of the geological period, completing about 550 million years ago, was also the time of the Varangerian ice age, signs of the formation of glaciers still visible today. Paleontological evidence reveals that life continued through this terrible time of ice and snow covered land. Much of the land was massed together until the late Cambrian Period and explosion about 500 million years ago. Suddenly large animal life appeared about this time, for reasons or origin that is still unknown. It was a short-lived period in terms of geological ages when Pannotia disintegrated to form four continents: Laurentia, Baltica, Siberia, and Gondwana.
This period lasted 45 million years and the area north of the tropics was almost entirely ocean, most of the world's land was in the southern supercontinent of Gondwana. This age is best known for its marine invertebrate life, like trilobites, brachiopods, found prolific in fossilized rock of the period. The climate was mild, the weather generally warm with a high content of moisture. When Gondwana settled on the South Pole during the Ordovician Period, massive glaciers formed that caused shallow seas to drain and sea levels to drop. Humanity could not be blamed by Global
Warming alarmists because humans did not exist. Mass extinction ensued to where 60% of all marine life and 25% of animal families became extinct. Fossils of coral have been found from this period, but reef ecosystems were predominantly algae and sponges with some bryozoans. Because of global disturbances, reefs collapsed. It became towards the period's end, the coldest time in Earth's history, unless you believe the Snowball Earth Theory.
This period marked considerable changes for Earth with repercussions upon the environment and animal/plant life. Coral reefs returned at becoming prolific and the large glaciers melted. It is a significant period where freshwater fish developed and life on land began to see spiders and centipedes, as well as vascular plant life.
This period was when there was a great supercontinent all connected. Great changes were occurring and it was a dangerous time for plant and animal life. Great deserts formed on land and the oxygen level fell because of dwindled plant life. Mass extinctions occurred. Mountain chains formed into what is the Appalachians in the United States and the Atlas Mountains in Morocco. Gondwana and Laurussia supercontinents collided. Despite a mass extinction, it was also the appearance of the group of animals that were ancestors of crocodiles and birds and a plethora of reptiles was forming before the age ended.
This age, made famous by the film based upon a novel, Jurassic Park, was an age of great plant growth, which also replenished the dwindled oxygen supply from the previous age. It is a time when the Pangaea begins to break up, the climate is warmed than today, a great time for dinosaurs in its early period. Jurassic is named for the Jura Mountains on the border between France and Switzerland where rocks of this age were studied. The ocean is prolific with large fish, squid and coiled ammonites. The great long-necked plesiosaurs, the legendary Loch Ness Monster, swam the great seas as vertebrates took flight in the form of pterosaurs, the first birds.
Early mammals were insignificant compared to the dinosaurs, some of which may have been warm-blooded after discovering a dinosaur with fossilized heart.
In this period the supercontinent began its marked break-up that began in the previous age. It is also considered the golden age of the dinosaurs and new insect species emerged, as well as larger mammals than the size of a modern rat. With the break up of the northern and southern continents, there was marked regional differences in flora and fauna. No great extinction occurred during this period, which is partly the reason it is called the 'golden age' of dinosaurs. Marine life was abundant, the skies became more crowded with pterosaurs and their cousins, and great reptiles roamed the Earth. It was a time of the Tyrannosaurus Rex and other great and dangerous creatures. During this period, 65 million years ago, an asteroid hit Earth where the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico is today, forming the Chicxulub impact crater. It caused an estimated 50% extinction of the world's animal species (and some plant life). Some scientists argue that some of that extinction was already taking place before the asteroid impact.
If you compare today's planet global map with this period, you can see the difference in continent positions.
The next global map shows the projected positions of continents 250 million years into the future. 
What they will be called, if there is anyone around to call it anything is anyone's guess.
It certainly was not caused by the Global Warming theory that has grown out of proportion and become so political today; as if scientists and politicians can legislate and fund projects to change what is to become inevitable. The major impact upon the changing Earth is the local star we call the Sun. The other possible dangerous occurrence is mass nuclear explosions that would have the effect of what happened in the Yucatan Peninsula millions of years ago.
If anything, humanity should be preparing to adapt to Earth's natural changes, rather than waste time and energy over political alarmist propaganda and junk scientist rantings.
I should imagine that humanity should be spending concerted energy and funds into space exploration and colonization of other planets with the advent of speed-of-light travel; rather than waste time waging war against each other, especially over religion and listen to political prostitutes and junk scientists in their alarmist rantings. 
Watch this video about space and time ... 
I would rather see, especially after our economical mess is straightened out, increase in support of NASA, space exploration and the expansion of humanity into the universe. But first we must become more intellectual and responsible, forming an Earth alliance (not a global government until we quit trying to kill and dominate each other), that would encourage and lead expeditions into worlds beyond our solar system. Hopefully we will not do what happened when the Old World discovered the New World and bring superstition and war-mongering with us. 
Another timeline of Earth history and projected look into the future ....

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