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Environmental changes during the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction and Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum: Implications for the Anthropocene

Keller, Gerta and Mateo, Paula and Punekar, Jahnavi and Khozyem, Hassan and Gertsch, Brian and Spangenberg, Jorge and Bitchong, Andre Mbabi and Adatte, Thierry (2018) Environmental changes during the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction and Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum: Implications for the Anthropocene. Gondwana Research , 56 . pp. 69-89. ISSN 1342-937X . http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20180205-092618571

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Abstract

The Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary (KPB) mass extinction (~ 66.02 Ma) and the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) (~ 55.8 Ma) are two remarkable climatic and faunal events in Earth's history that have implications for the current Anthropocene global warming and rapid diversity loss. Here we evaluate these two events at the stratotype localities in Tunisia and Egypt based on climate warming and environmental responses recorded in faunal and geochemical proxies. The KPB mass extinction is commonly attributed to the Chicxulub impact, but Deccan volcanism appears as a major culprit. New mercury analysis reveals that major Deccan eruptions accelerated during the last 10 ky and reached the tipping point leading up to the mass extinction. During the PETM, climate warmed rapidly by ~ 5 °C, which is mainly attributed to methane degassing from seafloor sediments during global warming linked to the North Atlantic Igneous Province (NAIP). Biological effects were transient, marked by temporary absence of most planktic foraminifera due to ocean acidification followed by the return of the pre-PETM fauna and diversification. In contrast, the current rapid rise in atmospheric CO_2 and climate warming are magnitudes faster than at the KPB or PETM events leading to predictions of a PETM-like response as best case scenario and rapidly approaching sixth mass extinction as worst-case scenario.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gr.2017.12.002DOIArticle
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1342937X17303702PublisherArticle
Additional Information:© 2017 International Association for Gondwana Research. Published by Elsevier B.V. Received 6 August 2017, Revised 30 November 2017, Accepted 1 December 2017, Available online 24 December 2017.
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180205-092618571
Persistent URL:http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20180205-092618571
Official Citation:Gerta Keller, Paula Mateo, Jahnavi Punekar, Hassan Khozyem, Brian Gertsch, Jorge Spangenberg, Andre Mbabi Bitchong, Thierry Adatte, Environmental changes during the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction and Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum: Implications for the Anthropocene, Gondwana Research, Volume 56, 2018, Pages 69-89, ISSN 1342-937X, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gr.2017.12.002. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1342937X17303702)
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:84670
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:05 Feb 2018 21:10
Last Modified:05 Feb 2018 21:10

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