Lecture: The Cretaceous/Paleogene boundary debate: myths, truths and uncertainties

Speaker: Professor Malcolm Hart, Emeritus Professor of Micropalaeontology, School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences, Plymouth University

Entry Fee

Members: Free

Visitors: £5.00

Date and Time

19:00 -

Location

Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, 16-18 Queen Square, Bath BA1 2HN


Lecture Description

The end-Cretaceous mass extinction is one of the ‘big five’ events in Earth history, seeing the demise of the non-avian dinosaurs, ammonites and a large percentage of the oceanic plankton. There is an on-going, heated, debate as to whether the bolide impact at Chicxulub (Mexico) or the eruption of the Deccan Volcanics were to blame, or was it a combination of both? Using field information from Denmark, Sweden, Italy, India, Brazil and the USA (Colorado, Texas and Alabama), the case for each possible cause will be reviewed. In some of these areas, especially Texas and Alabama, poor field descriptions have not helped in the debate! One critical issue, based on comparisons with the present day, is the role of ocean acidification, as this appears to be more important than previously thought.



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