Effects of Past Global Change on Life

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National Academies Press, Jan 15, 1995 - Science - 250 pages
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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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Contents

OVERVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS
1
An Update
21
Impact of Late Ordovician GlaciationDeglaciation
34
Copyright

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