Tala Ko

Prehistoric Explosions Wiped Out Ocean Life— And Created Petroleum

Posted on: Tuesday, 22 July 2008

This makes me wonder what creatures didn’t crawl out of the sea thanks to this. It also makes me think of Italo Calvino short stories.

If this is true, can you imagine what kind of world we’d be living in if the eruption had never happened and petroleum had never been created?

clipped from www.popsci.com

Much of Earth’s oil reserves can be traced to a single volcanic eruption, scientists say

Submarine Volcano: A massive undersea volcano (much like a larger version of this one captured in 2006, South of Japan) may have been the source of much of the world’s petroleum stores.
A new study by the University of Alberta suggests that a massive undersea volcano eruption 93 million years ago was the source of much of the world’s oil.
Researchers Steven Turgeon and Robert Creaser were alerted to the prehistoric blast when they found specific levels of osmium isotopes (indicators of volcanic activity in sea water) in black shale rocks off the coast of South America and in the mountains of central Italy.
Normally, decaying materials are completely broken down in the ocean, but due to the lack of oxygen, the prehistoric organic matter settled at the bottom of the sea bed and became trapped there, forming the petroleum-rich shale deposits which are important sources of oil today.
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