It was the asteroid, not volcanoes

It was the asteroid, not volcanoes

The Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary at Geulhemmerberg, in the Netherlands, where boundary clay samples were taken. Credit: Michael Henehan.

Researchers have resolved long-standing uncertainty about what caused the last mass extinction around 66 million years ago, which killed three quarters of the planet’s flora and fauna and wiped out the dinosaurs.

Putting to rest other causal hypotheses, particularly a prominent one about gradual volcanic action, they have confirmed that the impact of the Chicxulub asteroid caused sudden ocean acidification, impacting marine ecosystems and the carbon cycle.


Published by Cosmos.

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