Thursday, February 16, 2006

Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum

(edit: This comes from 10:00am: C. Kelly: PETM at the CCSM Paleo Climate Working Group meeting)

Well, this seems to have been, according to the presenter I am listening to right now, largely caused by methane hydrates released from the ocean. Hopefully, I am not going to screw up this process when transcribing. There was a warming trend in the southern ocean and that provided the kick-off. However, all of this is possible it seems that the methane deposits are actually biogenic in orgin. An excess of carbon put in the oceanic sediments. The oxygen using bacteria and critters chew on them first and use up the oxygen in the mud. The sulfurphiles then run through and use up the sulfur. Then the methane producing bacteria go to work.

Why would there have been an excess amount of organic material in the ocean then? hm. Something to do with the KT Event? Maybe? Not addressed in the concall. However, they are talking isotope tracking and that there were parallels here and with the Permian-Triassic Boundary.

They are making some interesting comparisons with research about the current ocean chemstry. Oy. That doesn't sound good. :S

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