Once in 27.5 million years, Earth undergoes massive cataclysmic events

Earth events
Scientists have put together 89 major events that changed the face of the earth over several million years, including the birth of continents | Image - Eunice Dhivya

As a Chinese proverb says, fortune does not come twice; misfortune does not come alone. The catastrophic geological events such as massive volcanism, species mass extinction appear to occur in clusters.

Boom! Volcanos thundered, shaking the whole of the Earth. One after another, a chain of volcanoes erupted. Taking place in repeated bursts, over the next 40,000 years, a mere blip in geological time scale, this calamitous event, known as the end-Triassic age catastrophe, took place about 201 million years ago. This wiped off more than 80% of all species from the face of the Earth.

Why did this cataclysmic event occur when it did? Was it random or was it a part of a pattern, a grand cosmic rhythm that we are yet to decipher?

From extinctions to depletion of oxygen level in oceans, sea-level fluctuations, a massive volcanic activity called flood-basalt eruptions and changes in Earth’s tectonic plates, Earth’s history is punctuated with several such cataclysmic geological events.

To continue reading this article...

You have to be a Premium Subscriber

Start your subscription with a free trial

Enjoy unlimited Eighth column, archives and games on
thefederal.com and thefederal.com and many more features.
You will also be supporting ethical and unbiased journalism.
plans start from Rs. 99
Get breaking news and latest updates from India
and around the world on thefederal.com