Mass extinction event 2 billion years ago killed 99 percent of life on Earth, study says

Mass extinction event 2 billion years ago killed 99 percent of life on Earth, study says

Science/Environment

Researchers have newly discovered a mass extinction event dating back to nearly 2.05bn years ago, which according to them, killed around 80 to 99 percent of life on planet Earth.

A team of researchers studied rocks in the Hudson Bay which formed several billion years ago and discovered a major downfall in life around 2.05bn years ago. This occurred simultaneously at the time when the GOE (Great Oxidation Event) got over between 2.4bn and 2bn years ago, which saw an increase and gradually a major drop in Earth’s oxygen levels.

According to the researchers, the event might have been a result of an oxygen surge, where the levels of oxygen rose to a unsustainable and staggering level. This ultimately dropped down precipitously after organisms which required it for survival were deprived of nutrients.

Peter Crockford, the co-author of the study said that the between 200 to 100mn years prior to the event, a huge amount of life was present on Earth. However, after this massive event, a large portion of life died off, Crockford added.

This discovery may give an insight on how Earth would be in distant future, Crockford further said.

Nicole Hansen

Nicole is a science graduate and professional with a strong experience in content management of Science and Environment related articles. Her strength includes the sound knowledge of science, astronomy and environment.

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