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Effects of Past Global Change on Life

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Description

What can we expect as global change progresses? Will there be thresholds that trigger sudden shifts in environmental conditions--or that cause catastrophic destruction of life?

Effects of Past Global Change on Life explores what earth scientists are learning about the impact of large-scale environmental changes on ancient life--and how these findings may help us resolve today's environmental controversies.

Leading authorities discuss historical climate trends and what can be learned from the mass extinctions and other critical periods about the rise and fall of plant and animal species in response to global change. The volume develops a picture of how environmental change has closed some evolutionary doors while opening others--including profound effects on the early members of the human family.

An expert panel offers specific recommendations on expanding research and improving investigative tools--and targets historical periods and geological and biological patterns with the most promise of shedding light on future developments.

This readable and informative book will be of special interest to professionals in the earth sciences and the environmental community as well as concerned policymakers.

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Suggested Citation

National Research Council. 1995. Effects of Past Global Change on Life. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/4762.

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Publication Info

272 pages | 8.5 x 11
ISBNs:
  • Hardcover: 978-0-309-05127-9
  • Ebook: 978-0-309-17681-1
DOI: https://doi.org/10.17226/4762
Contents

Table of Contents

skim chapter
Front Matter i-xvi
OVERVIEW 1-1
INTRODUCTION 2-2
METHODS 3-3
Periodic Cycles 4-4
The Eocene-Oligocene Transition 5-6
The Terminal Ordovician Transition 7-7
RATES OF TRANSITION 8-8
The Nature of Thresholds 9-9
PATTERNS OF BIOTIC RESPONSE 10-10
Extinction 11-11
Evolutionary Turnover 12-12
Delayed Recovery 13-14
RECOMMENDATIONS 15-16
REFERENCES 17-18
Background 19-20
INTRODUCTION 21-21
Geochemical Evidence for Atmospheric Change 22-23
Paleontological Evidence for Evolutionary Innovation 24-24
Biological Reasons for Linkage 25-27
Paleontological Data 28-28
Geochemical Data 29-29
CONCLUSIONS 30-30
REFERENCES 31-33
ABSTRACT 34-34
THE TIME FRAME 35-35
THE PALEOGEOGRAPHIC FRAMEWORK 36-38
GEOCHEMICAL EVIDENCE OF DEEP OCEAN VENTILATION 39-41
Shelly Faunas 42-42
ENVIRONMENTAL-ORGANISMAL CHANGES: A SUMMARY 43-43
REFERENCES 44-46
ABSTRACT 47-47
INTRODUCTION 48-48
HIGH-RESOLUTION APPROACH TO DOCUMENTING ANCIENT ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE 49-49
THE CENOMANIAN-TURONIAN (C-T) MASS EXTINCTION - AN ANCIENT GLOBAL BIODIVERSITY CRISIS IN A CHAOTIC GREENHOUSE WORLD 50-57
A CASE HISTORY: THE PUEBLO, COLORADO, C-T BOUNDARY SECTION 58-58
ESTABLISHING A CHRONOLOGY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL DECLINE AND MASS EXTINCTION ACROSS THE C-T BOUNDARY 59-60
INTERPRETATIONS AND CONCLUSIONS 61-63
REFERENCES 64-68
Late Cenomanian Background Conditions 69-69
Late Cenomanian Mass Extinction 70-70
End Of Sampling Interval 71-71
ABSTRACT 72-72
INTRODUCTION 73-73
HOW COMPLETE ARE K/T BOUNDARY SECTIONS? 74-75
Planktic Foraminifera 76-77
Calcareous Nannoplankton 78-79
El Kef, Tunisia 80-81
Caravaca, Spain 82-82
Brazos, Texas 83-83
ODP Site 738C, Indian Antarctic Ocean 84-85
Calcareous Nannoplankton 86-86
ARE SPECIFIC HABITATS SELECTIVELY DESTROYED? 87-89
DISCUSSION AND SUMMARY 90-90
REFERENCES 91-93
INTRODUCTION 94-95
TERMINAL PALEOCENE MASS EXTINCTION IN THE DEEP SEA 96-96
ASSOCIATION BETWEEN MASS EXTINCTION AND OCEANIC WARMING 97-100
CAUSE OF MASS EXTINCTION IN DEEP SEA 101-101
CAUSE OF OCEANOGRAPHIC AND CLIMATE CHANGE 102-102
IMPLICATIONS AND SUMMARY 103-104
REFERENCES 105-107
INTRODUCTION 108-108
OXYGEN ISOTOPIC RECORDS OF LOW LATITUDE TEMPERATURES 109-109
ARGUMENTS FOR TROPICAL TEMPERATURE STABILITY 110-110
MODEL-DERIVED TROPICAL TEMPERATURES 111-111
SUMMARY OF TROPICAL CLIMATE EXTREMES 112-112
CLIMATE TOLERANCES OF TROPICAL ORGANISMS 113-113
A MID-CRETACEOUS CASE STUDY 114-114
REFERENCES 115-117
ABSTRACT 118-118
The Pliocene Prior to 2.5 Ma 119-120
Onset of the Ice Age at 2.5 to 2.4 Ma 121-122
Africa 123-123
Europe 124-124
Marine Biotas 125-126
Plateau Uplift 127-128
Ice-Sheet Forcing of Climatic Change 129-129
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS 130-130
REFERENCES 131-133
ABSTRACT 134-134
INTRODUCTION 135-135
Peat Swamps 136-136
Clastic Wetlands 137-137
Resolution at 100- to 104-yr Time Scales: Habitats and Species Assemblages 138-138
Resolution at the 105- to 107-yr Time Scale: Interseam Patterns 139-139
Coal-Swamp Species and Ecomorphs 140-140
Changes at the Landscape Level 141-142
Changes in the Habitat Composition of Landscapes 143-145
Changes in the Species-Level Composition of Habitats 146-146
Evidence for Climatic Variability 147-147
Relationships of Climatic Patterns to Vegetational Patterns 148-148
SUMMARY AND IMPLICATIONS 149-149
Hierarchical Organization 150-150
Long-Term Species Replacement Dynamics: Evolutionary Implications 151-151
REFERENCES 152-155
INTRODUCTION 156-156
Albian-Cenomanian and Arrival of Angiosperms 157-157
Turonian-Coniacian-Santonian 158-158
Albian-Cenomanian and Early Angiosperms 159-163
Turonian-Coniacian-Santonian 164-164
Eocene 165-165
Eocene 166-166
Northern and Southern Floras: Deciduous Versus Evergreen 167-167
Cenozoic Vegetational Changes 168-168
REFERENCES 169-173
UNIQUENESS OF THE AUSTRALIAN SYSTEM 174-174
MODERN VEGETATION OF AUSTRALIA 175-177
MAJOR TERTIARY CLIMATIC CHANGES 178-178
PLANT MEGAFOSSIL EVIDENCE FOR CLIMATIC CHANGE 179-181
REFERENCES 182-183
ABSTRACT 184-184
INTRODUCTION 185-185
Chronofaunas and Turnover Pulses 186-187
Importance of Immigrants 188-188
Paleocene Chronofauna: Tropical Forest 189-189
White River Chronofauna: Woodland Savanna 190-191
Sheep Creek Chronofauna: Park Savanna 192-192
Clarendonian Chronofauna: Grassland Savanna 193-193
Late Pliocene and Pleistocene: Further Continentality and Provincialism 194-194
RESULTS 195-196
DISCUSSION 197-197
European Land Mammal Record 198-198
Indian Land Mammal Record 199-199
Oxygen Isotopes and Mammal Immigrations 200-203
CONCLUSIONS 204-204
REFERENCES 205-208
ABSTRACT 209-209
INTRODUCTION 210-210
Ecology of Modern Planktonic Foraminifera 211-211
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 212-212
Stable Isotopic Records 213-213
Faunal Response to Temperature and Salinity Changes in the Gulf of Mexico 214-216
CONCLUSIONS 217-217
REFERENCES 218-220
INTRODUCTION 221-221
SENSITIVITY OF POLLEN DATA TO VEGETATION PATTERNS 222-223
MAPS OF CHANGING TAXON DISTRIBUTION THROUGH TIME 224-225
IMPLICATIONS FOR SPECIES AND EVOLUTION 226-226
TIME AND SPACE SCALES OF VEGETATIONAL AND TAXONOMIC UNITS 227-228
REFERENCES 229-232
ABSTRACT 233-233
INTRODUCTION 234-234
DEVELOPMENT IN APES, HUMANS, AND AUSTRALOPITHECINES 235-235
Arboreal Traits 236-237
The Arboreal Imperative 238-238
CLIMATIC FORCING 239-240
REFERENCES 241-244
Index 245-250
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