Link identified between continental breakup, volcanic carbon emissions and evolution

July 21, 2017
Link identified between continental breakup, volcanic carbon emissions and evolution
Eruption of Cleveland Volcano, Aleutian Islands, Alaska is featured in this image photographed by an Expedition 13 crewmember on the International Space Station. Credit: Image courtesy of the Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

Researchers have found that the formation and breakup of supercontinents over hundreds of millions of years controls volcanic carbon emissions. The results, reported in the journal Science, could lead to a reinterpretation of how the carbon cycle has evolved over Earth's history, and how this has impacted the evolution of Earth's habitability.

The researchers, from the University of Cambridge, used existing measurements of and helium from more than 80 volcanoes around the world in order to determine its origin. Carbon and helium coming out of volcanoes can either come from deep within the Earth or be recycled near the , and measuring the of these elements can pinpoint their source. When the team analysed the data, they found that most of the carbon coming out of volcanoes is recycled near the surface, in contrast with earlier assumptions that the carbon came from deep in the Earth's interior. "This is an essential piece of geological carbon cycle puzzle," said Dr Marie Edmonds, the senior author of the study.

Over millions of years, carbon cycles back and forth between Earth's deep interior and its surface. Carbon is removed from the surface from processes such as the formation of limestone and the burial and decay of plants and animals, which allows to grow at the surface. Volcanoes are one way that carbon is returned to the surface, although the amount they produce is less than a hundredth of the amount of caused by human activity. Today, the majority of carbon from volcanoes is recycled near the surface, but it is unlikely that this was always the case.

Volcanoes form along large island or continental arcs where tectonic plates collide and one plate slides under the other, such as the Aleutian Islands between Alaska and Russia, the Andes of South America, the volcanoes throughout Italy, and the Mariana Islands in the western Pacific. These volcanoes have different chemical fingerprints: the 'island arc' volcanoes emit less carbon which comes from deep in the mantle, while the 'continental arc' volcanoes emit far more carbon which comes from closer to the surface.

Link identified between continental breakup, volcanic carbon emissions and evolution
Credit: University of Cambridge

Over hundreds of millions of years, the Earth has cycled between periods of continents coming together and breaking apart. During periods when continents come together, volcanic activity was dominated by island arc volcanoes; and when continents break apart, continental arcs dominate. This back and forth changes the chemical fingerprint of carbon coming to Earth's surface systematically over geological time, and can be measured through the different isotopes of carbon and helium.

Variations in the isotope ratio, or chemical fingerprint, of carbon are commonly measured in limestone. Researchers had previously thought that the only thing that could change the carbon fingerprint in limestone was the production of atmospheric oxygen. As such, the carbon isotope fingerprint in limestone was used to interpret the evolution of habitability of Earth's surface. The results of the Cambridge team suggest that volcanoes played a larger role in the carbon cycle than had previously been understood, and that earlier assumptions need to be reconsidered.

"This makes us fundamentally re-evaluate the evolution of the ," said Edmonds. "Our results suggest that the limestone record must be completely reinterpreted if the volcanic carbon coming to the surface can change its carbon isotope composition."

A great example of this is in the Cretaceous Period, 144 to 65 million years ago. During this time period there was a major increase in the carbon isotope ratio found in limestone, which has been interpreted as an increase in atmospheric oxygen concentration. This increase in atmospheric oxygen was causally linked to the proliferation of mammals in the late Cretaceous. However, the results of the Cambridge team suggest that the increase in the carbon isotope ratio in the limestones could be almost entirely due to changes in the types of volcanoes at the surface.

"The link between oxygen levels and the burial of organic material allowed life on Earth as we know it to evolve, but our geological record of this link needs to be re-evaluated," said co-author Dr Alexandra Turchyn, also from the Department of Earth Sciences.

Explore further: Limestone assimilation under volcanoes helps understand Earth's carbon cycle

More information: Emily Mason et al. Remobilization of crustal carbon may dominate volcanic arc emissions, Science (2017). DOI: 10.1126/science.aan5049

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23 comments

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Anonym
2 / 5 (4) Jul 21, 2017
The headline entirely misses the point ... or is that the point? Climate science is beginning to grow up.
Kalopin
1 / 5 (7) Jul 21, 2017
...spin force congeals land masses reforming supercontinents, which will cause planetary imbalance, allowing orbiting satellites, asteroids, moons,... to impact...once again, breaking apart, into smaller plates, leaving a better balanced planet..., ...plate tectonics owes most of its movement to extraterrestrial forces...

The Moon broke Pangaea to pieces when it impacted 13kya at the YDB, a comet split Greenland off of north America 10.5kya, and a meteor, from C/1811F1, reshaped the Mississippi river valley on Dec.16, 1811... [can you verify these findings?]- https://www.linke...ony-hood

thanks guys ;-]
katesisco
1 / 5 (5) Jul 23, 2017
Like Kalopin comment, added comments to linked in site.
If the Moon is a thin hard iron shell over an interior of 'negative mascons', then we should prepare to mine this gift as the ancients did the surface, arsenic-free copper on the Upper Pen of Michigan in Neolithic times.
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
Kalopin:
The Moon broke Pangaea to pieces when it impacted 13kya at the YDB, a comet split Greenland off of north America 10.5kya, and a meteor, from C/1811F1, reshaped the Mississippi river valley on Dec.16, 1811... [can you verify these findings?]-


I can verify that the Mississippi river valley was in the same shape on December 17, 1811 as it was on December 15, 1811.

You can verify that you are rank moron, and you just did in that comment.
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
katesisco:
Like Kalopin comment, added comments to linked in site.
If the Moon is a thin hard iron shell over an interior of 'negative mascons', then we should prepare to mine this gift as the ancients did the surface, arsenic-free copper on the Upper Pen of Michigan in Neolithic times.


Shut up with this lunatic drivel already. How do you people manage to get to a computer with straitjackets on?
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (4) Jul 23, 2017
Anonym:
The headline entirely misses the point ... or is that the point? Climate science is beginning to grow up.


Climate science is quite mature. You, judging by that inane post, aren't grown up enough to talk about it in public. Stop it.
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
Kalopin:
The Moon broke Pangaea to pieces when it impacted 13kya at the YDB, a comet split Greenland off of north America 10.5kya, and a meteor, from C/1811F1, reshaped the Mississippi river valley on Dec.16, 1811... [can you verify these findings?]-


I can verify that the Mississippi river valley was in the same shape on December 17, 1811 as it was on December 15, 1811.

You can verify that you are rank moron, and you just did in that comment.


...then do it!
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (2) Jul 23, 2017
Kalopin:
I can verify that the Mississippi river valley was in the same shape on December 17, 1811 as it was on December 15, 1811.

You can verify that you are rank moron, and you just did in that comment.


...then do it!


All the many eyewitness accounts of the New Madrid earthquakes describe a big (probably 7.4) earthquake. But none of them describe anything remotely like *THE GODDAMN MOON COLLIDING WITH THE EARTH*. The Mississippi River valley shook, but it was in the same shape after the quakes compared with *THE GODDAMN MOON COLLIDING WITH THE EARTH*. Because if *THE GODDAMN MOON COLLIDED WITH THE EARTH*, not only would the Earth's crust be molten again, especially just a century later, but *THE GODDAMN MOON WOULDN'T ORBIT THE EARTH NOW*.

You proven rank moron. Shut up already.
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
omg, why do you all let idiots like this post?
@EmceeSquared- you have not read, or you do not understand a single bit of the evidence!
...it was a cometary fragment- a meteor, from the debris trail of sungrazer comet c/1811f1 that impacted northern Mississippi on Dec. 16, 1811...
...the Moon impacted Earth at the YDB, 13kya...
...a comet hit the Hudson 10.5kya...

...and,[ if you were actually become a scientist and read through the historical accounts, as] there was no Richter scale and no way to measure an object in space with accuracy, [then] you will find that over one hundred thousand acres of land was affected... Crowley's ridge moved northward for over fifty miles...
... the shockwave was witnessed and reported by many, as moving the land up and down forty to fifty feet... there is a very apparent shock wave throughout the embayment, centering at northeastern Marsha;; county, Ms.,... the "sand blows" were pushed upward from the force and pressure of impact...
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
...does it sound like the valley changed yet?
....please read through the accounts [before spouting ignorant insults]...
...all witnesses reported the rivers changing, either completely disappearing or forming entirely new ones, and that is what had occurred...
...the Tennessee river met the Mississippi at new Madrid, where Reelfoot lake is now, and this river was pushed up to the Ohio...
...The Mississippi was pushed to the northwest for several miles, and all this is easily viewable on any satellite...
...they are trying to say the church-bells ringing throughout the northeast was just a myth, trying to lower, the already way too low Richter estimates and believe that only a few hundred may have died, up and down the river...
...history has been lost and distorted...
...go to your satellite and pan in and out from north Slayden, Ms.
...ever studied stratigraphy? ;-]
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
...do not embarrass yourself further, go through the evidence and come back with some form of legitimate rebuttal, or admit the truth...
Kalopin
1 / 5 (4) Jul 24, 2017
...here are a couple of articles to get you started, read through every detail, discussion, link,... and get back to me with your opinion/s-
https://www.linke...ony-hood
https://www.linke...lished=t
[-;...post haste now!...;-]
Captain Stumpy
4 / 5 (4) Jul 24, 2017
...do not embarrass yourself further, go through the evidence and come back with some form of legitimate rebuttal, or admit the truth...
interestingly enough, this is an oft repeated line from many of the delusional nutters from phys.org... like davedw or some of the other "atlantis" or "alien" groupies

point being:
this is a science site
those religious subjective arguments are not only irrelevant, but they're not reproducible, nor are they verifiable as legitimate for all persons

the only way you can agree that these so-called "truths" exist is to suspend logic and accept the beliefs as factual simply because some idiot was able to make a web-page, or self publish unsubstantiated conjecture with no evidence like reg

and that is definitely not how science works

but this will also fall on deaf ears because Dunning-Kruger and delusional schizophrenia are strong with this one
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
...do not embarrass yourself further, go through the evidence and come back with some form of legitimate rebuttal, or admit the truth...
interestingly enough, this is an oft repeated line from many of the delusional nutters from phys.org... like davedw or some of the other "atlantis" or "alien" groupies

point being:
this is a science site
those religious subjective arguments are not only irrelevant, but they're not reproducible, nor are they verifiable as legitimate for all persons

the only way you can agree that these so-called "truths" exist is to suspend logic and accept the beliefs as factual simply because some idiot was able to make a web-page, or self publish unsubstantiated conjecture with no evidence like reg

and that is definitely not how science works

but this will also fall on deaf ears because Dunning-Kruger and delusional schizophrenia are strong with this one


-is what needs to be told to those clinging to the current outdated paradigm!
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
Kalopin:
...here are a couple of articles to get you started, read through every detail, discussion, link,... and get back to me with your opinion/s-
https://www.linke...ony-hood
[-;...post haste now!...;-]


LinkedIn is a business networking site that any member can post anything to.

Have you noticed that none of your links come from actual scientists?

Have you noticed that *THE GODDAMN MOON IS STILL UP IN THE SKY*? You are probably the stupidest troll I've ever seen on Phys.org, and that's really stupid.
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
...Chicxulub crater was downtown Atlantis in the Pleistocene. The city was covered in a type of rock that forms at the bottom of seas, from a most catastrophic encounter...
...the only object with enough mass, weight, volume, density, electromagnetic repulsion, and in orbit, would be the Moon... the physics will not allow otherwise... this impact brought about the much more primitive Clovis...
...the Clovis were wiped out when a comet hit the Hudson...

...in 1811 a massive comet was first seen in March, lost sight in mid-June, re-appearing in late August, appeared to the general public as fifty percent larger than the Sun in October... William Herschel saw the comet's tail becoming much shorter in early November-because it was coming toward him-the planet...
Weather [from the comet] covered the sky, but many reported the comet as passing over at the same moment as the quakes, which were many world-wide... obviously, the Earth changes were due to the sungrazer...
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
Kalopin:
...here are a couple of articles to get you started, read through every detail, discussion, link,... and get back to me with your opinion/s-
https://www.linke...ony-hood
[-;...post haste now!...;-]


LinkedIn is a business networking site that any member can post anything to.

Have you noticed that none of your links come from actual scientists?

Have you noticed that *THE GODDAMN MOON IS STILL UP IN THE SKY*? You are probably the stupidest troll I've ever seen on Phys.org, and that's really stupid.


...why?, you can't even understand impact physics!
The Moon is iron! The Maria are the scars from this latest encounter...
...how else did the city become buried beneath tonnes of limestone, a type of rock that forms at the bottom of seas?
...tell me then- the formation process for the Ozarks, Mississippi embayment, Appalachias, Devil's tower, Grand canyon,... I can go on and on,...
Kalopin
1 / 5 (2) Jul 24, 2017
There is only one logical solution- the Moon had to impact to produce all these features. There is no other object available to produce such a force...
...the Moon came in at very reduced speed due to the fact it was in a very low and unstable orbit, it did not come in at the speed of a comet, or even an asteroid... It also, at impact, caused a pole reversal [Gothenburg geomagnetic excursion] which, along with a self-made springboard sent the Moon back out to its tidally locked orbit, leaving a much better balanced planet, full of cluelessness- a world of devolved creatures...

...and the cluelessness reveals itself through the mistranslations and misinterpretations of science and historical accounts- and is very apparent on this thread...
Kalopin
1 / 5 (2) Jul 24, 2017
...you know, I am waiting for some detail, within my finings, which is inaccurate, got somethin'?
...one little detail?
...no?
Tel me, what doesn't add up?
"IF" you are a true scientist, and not just an insult comic, then study every bit of this research...
Do you care about the truth?, education? science? history? ...students who are paying dearly? the future? ...planet? ...maybe your own children? [or, maybe you just don't care?...and would rather have a "put down" fight? [in which, I can assure you, I will definitely win!;-]
Captain Stumpy
3 / 5 (2) Jul 25, 2017
@kalopin-ed diarrhea brained idiot
-is what needs to be told to those clinging to the current outdated paradigm!
no
what is needed to change any paradigm is a shift in awareness, especially if it's of a factual nature
https://scholar.g...dt=0%2C4

a paradigm is not always bad https://en.wikipe...Paradigm

the scientific principle is one paradigm that helps to eliminate dipsh*t's like you from being taken as a legitimate scientist because it requires not only evidence, but the ability to replicate the work

this has historically been proven to be effective stopping us from problems (like the Wakefield incident or cold fusion)

the method works

one thing you have yet to provide is: evidence from any reputable source that can be replicated or validated

that makes you someone who doesn't conform to the scientific principle
this is known as pseudoscience (or religion) - neither of which are relevant
Kalopin
1 / 5 (3) Jul 25, 2017
[what you believe is pseudo]
...for our ancestors to see their pyramids buried, would be the equivalent of landing on the beach and seeing the statue of liberty up to her neck in rock and sand. [what part would you be playin'?!;-]

[...it's so sad, such a little primitive lost being, all about the little nonsense you were taught, and unable to remove yourself from your little box...]
[wonder?-] ...maybe, if you were to actually [,grow a brain cell,] go through the evidence, study what is presently being taught and compare? [...but name-calling would be more on par with your evolutionary level?] ...maybe you got a scientist friend that can help explain? no?
...'cause, guess what? They don't [frickin'] know!
...this is the ONLY scenario to describe the formation process for every single anomaly, from the Black sea to passed the Grand canyon...
so, good luck...
[don't make me have to brainslap you again!;-]
EmceeSquared
5 / 5 (1) Jul 25, 2017
Kalopin:[q...this is the ONLY scenario to describe the formation process for every single anomaly, from the Black sea to passed the Grand canyon...

Now the dolt claims that the Grand Canyon was formed by a gentle bounce of the Moon from orbit off the Earth back into orbit. Because they were traumatized by the end of _The Planet of the Apes_. It's got to be meningitis or something, no mere thought process can commit even a fool to something this stupid.
Kalopin
1 / 5 (2) Jul 26, 2017
...the Grand canyon was formed by an electrical arc...
...just after a pole reversal...
...plasma release, as the Moon raked across the surface...
...just as all the other mountainous anomalies throughout the Midwest...
...as the Moon was lifting the plate upward, forming Devil's tower, Kasha-katuwe and flattening the tops and all the plateaus, it also engulfed the Farallon and Nazca plates, that had just been broken apart, forming the Rockies and Andes...
...yes, all at once!...
...do you not see the comparison between the apes and how primitive your belief system is?... ;-]

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