A Whiff from Blue-Green Algae was Likely Responsible for the Earth's Oxygen

by Dr. Trupti Shirole on  November 22, 2015 at 5:07 PM Environmental Health
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Earth's oxygen-rich atmosphere emerged in whiffs from a kind of blue-green algae in shallow oceans around 2.5 billion years ago, revealed a new study from Canadian and US scientists.
 A Whiff from Blue-Green Algae was Likely Responsible for the Earth's Oxygen
A Whiff from Blue-Green Algae was Likely Responsible for the Earth's Oxygen
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These whiffs of oxygen likely happened in the following 100 million years, changing the levels of oxygen in Earth's atmosphere until enough accumulated to create a permanently oxygenated atmosphere around 2.4 billion years ago - a transition widely known as the Great Oxidation Event.

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Brian Kendall of the University of Waterloo said, "The onset of Earth's surface oxygenation was likely a complex process characterized by multiple whiffs of oxygen until a tipping point was crossed. Until now, we haven't been able to tell whether oxygen concentrations 2.5 billion years ago were stable or not. These new data provide a much more conclusive answer to that question."

The study is published in Science Advances.

Source: ANI
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