So much still to learn. As technology gets better we are better able to fill in the missing pieces of the planet’s deep past.
Geoscientists have long presumed that, like today, the tropics remained warm throughout Earth’s last major glaciation 300 million years ago.
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As a result of the close proximity of the ancient tropical glaciers to the sea, the toes of the glaciers were likely less than 500 meters above sea level–much lower than the tropical glaciers of Earth’s recent glacial times.
“The Late Paleozoic tropical climate was not buffered against cold from the high latitudes, as everyone had thought,” said Soreghan. “The evidence we found indicates that glaciers were common at this time, even in tropical latitudes. This calls into question traditional assumptions of long-lasting equatorial warmth in the Late Paleozoic, and raises the possibility of large-scale and unexpected climate change in the tropics during that time.” [ read more Cold and ice, not heat, episodically gripped tropical regions 300 million years ago]
Thoughout the planets time cold eras brought death, destruction and extinctions, global warming brought explosions of life.