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Tree-Ring Research (Dendrochronology) in General
The Pros and Cons of Pre-Neogene Growth Rings
Leaf Size and Shape and the Reconstruction of Past Climates
Stomatal Density
! Wildfire and Present Day Fire Ecology@
! Fungal Wood Decay: Evidence from the Fossil Record@
! Cuticles@
! Trees@

The Rise of Oxygen and the Global Carbon Cycle

! J.F. Allen and W.F.J. Vermaas (2010): Evolution of Photosynthesis. PDF file, In: Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (ELS), John Wiley & Sons.

American Museum of Natural History, Learning Resources: The Rise of Oxygen. This website is part of Science Bulletins, an innovative online and exhibition program that offers the public a window into the excitement of scientific discovery. See also:
Search results: "oxygen".

K.L. Bacon and G.T. Swindles (2016): Could a potential Anthropocene mass extinction define a new geological period? In PDF, The Anthropocene Review, 3: 208–217.

K.L. Bacon et al. (2016): Can atmospheric composition influence plant fossil preservation potential via changes in leaf mass per area? A new hypothesis based on simulated palaeoatmosphere experiments. In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 464: 51-64. See also here.

S.J. Baker et al. (2022): CO2-induced biochemical changes in leaf volatiles decreased fire-intensity in the run-up to the Triassic–Jurassic boundary. Free access, New Phytologist, 235: 1442–1454.

BBC Earth timeline.
Oxygen enters the atmosphere.

D.J. Beerling (2013): Atmospheric carbon dioxide: a driver of photosynthetic eukaryote evolution for over a billion years? In PDF, Philos. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B, Biol. Sci., 367: 477-482.

D. Beerling et al. (2009): Methane and the CH4 related greenhouse effect over the past 400 million years. In PDF.

D.J. Beerling and R.A. Berner (2005): Feedbacks and the coevolution of plants and atmospheric CO2. In PDF, PNAS, 102.

! D.J. Beerling and C.P. Osborne (2002): Physiological ecology of Mesozoic polar forests in a high CO2 environment. Annals of Botany, 89: 329-339.

! D.J. Beerling and D.L. Royer (2002): Fossil plants as indicators of the Phanerozoic global carbon cycle. PDF file, Annu. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci., 30: 527-556.
Snapshot provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
see also here.

D.J. Beerling et al. (2001): Evolution of leaf-form in land plants linked to atmospheric CO2 decline in the Late Palaeozoic era. PDF file, Nature, 410.

D.J. Beerling (1998): The future as the key to the past for palaeobotany? Abstract, Trends in Ecology & Evolution.
This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

David Beerling, White Rose Palaeobiology Group, UK: Atmospheric CO2 and climate change during the Permo-Carboniferous glaciation inferred from fossil plants. Project description. See also here (Low atmospheric CO2 levels during the Permo- Carboniferous glaciation inferred from fossil lycopsidsPDF file, in PDF).
These expired links are available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! A. Bekker et al. (2004): Dating the rise of atmospheric oxygen. Free access, Nature, 427: 117-120.
"Several lines of geological and geochemical evidence indicate that the level of atmospheric oxygen was extremely low before 2.45 billion years (Gyr) ago, and that it had reached considerable levels by 2.22 Gyr ago. (...) evidence that the rise of atmospheric oxygen had occurred by 2.32 Gyr ago".

! C.M. Belcher et al. (2010): Baseline intrinsic flammability of Earth´s ecosystems estimated from paleoatmospheric oxygen over the past 350 million years. In PDF, PNAS, 107.

Phil Berardelli, ScienceNOW Daily News: Oxygenated Oceans Go Way, Way Back. See also: New Evidence for an Earlier Origin of Oxygenic Photosynthesis (NASA Astrobiology Institute).

! H. Beraldi-Campesi (2013): Early life on land and the first terrestrial ecosystems. In PDF, Ecological Processes, 2. See also here.
Note figure 1: Suggested chronology of geological, atmospheric, and biological events during the Hadean, Archean, and Paleoproterozoic eons.

! R.A. Berner (2013): From black mud to earth system science: A scientific autobiography. In PDF, American Journal of Science, 313: 1-60.
See also here.

! R.A. Berner et al. (2007): Oxygen and evolution. In PDF, Science, 316.
Now recovered from the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! R.A. Berner (2006): GEOCARBSULF: A combined model for Phanerozoic atmospheric O2 and CO2. PDF file, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 70: 5653-5664.

Robert A. Berner (2004): The Phanerozoic carbon cycle: CO2 and O2. In PDF, Oxford University Press.

R.A. Berner and Z. Kothavala (2001): GEOCARB III: a revised model of atmospheric CO2 over Phanerozoic time. In PDF, American Journal of Science, 301: 182-204.

Robert A. Berner, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, CT: Atmospheric oxygen over Phanerozoic time. PNAS, Vol. 96, Issue 20, 10955-10957, September 28, 1999.

! Robert A. Berner (1990): Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels over Phanerozoic time. PDF file, Science.

Robert A. Berner, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, CT: Atmospheric oxygen over Phanerozoic time. PNAS, Vol. 96, Issue 20, 10955-10957, September 28, 1999.

Robert A. Berner, Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut: The Rise of Plants and Their Effect on Weathering and Atmospheric CO2 (now via wayback archive). See also here, and there.

F.O. Borges et al. (2022): Impacts of Low Oxygen on Marine Life: Neglected, but a Crucial Priority for Research. Free access, The Biological Bulletin, 243: 104–119.
! Note figure 1: Timeline of main events regarding O2 variation in the atmosphere and in the ocean throughout Earth’s geological history and between the start of the Neoproterozoic Oxygenation Event and current time.

C.K. Boyce et al. (2022): What we talk about when we talk about the long-term carbon cycle. Open access, New Phytologist.

C.K. Boyce and M.A. Zwieniecki (2018): The prospects for constraining productivity through time with the whole-plant physiology of fossils. Open access, New Phytologist.

C.K. Boyce and M.A. Zwieniecki (2012): Leaf fossil record suggests limited influence of atmospheric CO2 on terrestrial productivity prior to angiosperm evolution. Free access, PNAS, 109: 10403–10408.

Terry Boyce, The University of Hong Kong: The Evolution of the Atmosphere. Now via wayback archive.

J. Bres et al. (2021): The Cretaceous physiological adaptation of angiosperms to a declining pCO2: a modeling approach emulating paleo-traits. Free access, Biogeosciences, 18: 5729–5750.
"... we show that protoangiosperm physiology does not allow vegetation to grow under low pCO2
[...] confirms the hypothesis of a likely evolution of angiosperms from a state of low leaf hydraulic and photosynthetic capacities at high pCO2 to a state of high leaf hydraulic and photosynthetic capacities linked to leaves with more and more veins together ..."

T.J. Brodribb and T.S. Feild (2010): Leaf hydraulic evolution led a surge in leaf photosynthetic capacity during early angiosperm diversification. In PDF, Ecology Letters, 13: 175-183. See also here.
"... Our data suggest that early terrestrial angiosperms produced leaves with low photosynthetic rates, but that subsequent angiosperm success is linked to a surge in photosynthetic capacity during their early diversification".

! D.E. Canfield (2005): The early history of atmospheric oxygen: homage to Robert M. Garrels. In PDF, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 3: 1-36. See also here and there.

T. Cardona (2018): Early Archean origin of heterodimeric Photosystem I. In PDF, Heliyon, 4. See also here.

T. Cardona (2016): Reconstructing the Origin of Oxygenic Photosynthesis: Do Assembly and Photoactivation Recapitulate Evolution? Front. PlantSci., 7: 257.

D.K. Carpenter (2016): Charcoal, forests, and Earth's palaeozoic geochemical oxygen cycle. In PDF, Dissertation, 293 p. University of Southampton.

K.A. Crichton et al. (2023): What the geological past can tell us about the future of the ocean’s twilight zone. Free access, Nature Communications, 14.
Note figure 1: Foraminiferal data and climate indicators for the early Eocene, mid- Miocene, and preindustrial present.

Y. Cui et al. (2020): A 23 m.y. record of low atmospheric CO2. Open access, Geology, 48: 888–892.

! T.W. Dahl and S.K.M. Arens (2020): The impacts of land plant evolution on Earth's climate and oxygenation state – An interdisciplinary review. Open access, Chemical Geology, 547.

S.J. Daines et al. (2017): Atmospheric oxygen regulation at low Proterozoic levels by incomplete oxidative weathering of sedimentary organic carbon. Nat. Commun., 8.

! M.P. D'Antonio et al. (2020): Land plant evolution decreased, rather than increased, weathering rates. In PDF, Geology, 48: 29–33. See also here.
Note figure 2: Paleozoic pCO2 values from a recent proxy compilation.
"... The mass-balance constraints on the long-term carbon cycle provide a mechanism for linking how land plant evolution simultaneously increased nutrient recycling and weathering efficiency of the Earth’s surface ..."

! W.J. Davis (2023): Mass extinctions and their relationship with atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration: Implications for Earth's future. Open access, Earth's Future, 11: e2022EF003336.
! Note figure 1: Time series of mass extinctions and their substages over the past 534 million years.
Figure 2: Equal-interval histogram of percent genus loss versus (vs.) time showing 25 previously-identified mass extinction events over the past 534 million years.

! X. Delclos et al. (2023): Amber and the Cretaceous Resinous Interval. Free access, Earth-Science Reviews, 243.
Note figure 2 (palaeogeographical maps): Distribution of resiniferous forests based on known amber-bearing localities and known occurrences of potential coniferous resin-producing tree families throughout the Cretaceous.
Figure 4: Oxygen (O2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) atmospheric composition, temperature, and Large Igneous Province (LIP) activity throughout the Cretaceous.
"... Here we discuss the set of interrelated abiotic and biotic factors potentially involved in resin production during that time. We name this period of mass resin production by conifers during the late Mesozoic, fundamental as an archive of terrestrial life, the ‘Cretaceous Resinous Interval’ (CREI) ..."

! C.F. Demoulin (2019): Cyanobacteria evolution: Insight from the fossil record. In PDF, Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 140: 206–223.
See also here.
Note table 1: Summary of microfossil morphological features, habitat, occurrences and their modern analogues.
Figure 3: Microfossils record of unambiguous, probable and possible cyanobacteria.
"... Cyanobacterial fossil record starts unambiguously at 1.89–1.84 Ga and the minimum age for the oxygenic photosynthesis starts with the GOE [Great Oxidation Event] around 2.4 Ga. ..."

David J. Des Marais: Palaeobiology: Sea change in sediments. Abstract, Nature 437, 826-827; 2005. Earth's oxygen levels and microbial "footprints".

Senatskommission für Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG):
Dynamische Erde – Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften. 8.1 - Die Evolution von Atmosphäre und Ozeanen. In German
Still available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

Y. Donnadieu et al. (2009): Exploring the climatic impact of the continental vegetation on the Mezosoic atmospheric CO2 and climate history. In PDF, Clim. Past, 5: 85-96.

UCD Plant Palaeoecology and Palaeobiology Group, Dublin, Ireland:
OXYEVOL: The role of atmospheric oxygen in plant evolution over the past 400 million years.
The aim of the project is to identify how changes in atmospheric O2 and CO2 concentration influence the timing of key evolutionary innovations and shifts in ecological dominance/success of various plant groups throughout geological time.

Earth Learning Idea (James Devon, London). Free PDF downloads for Earth-related teaching ideas. Go to:
Earth´s atmosphere - step by step evolution (in PDF). Using a physical model to show the development of our current atmosphere.

Encyclopaedia Britannica: evolution of the atmosphere. Website saved by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J. Eystein et al. (2007): Palaeoclimate. In PDF, Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Cambridge University Press.
See also here.

M. Fakhraee et al. (2023): Earth's surface oxygenation and the rise of eukaryotic life: Relationships to the Lomagundi positive carbon isotope excursion revisited. In PDF, Earth-Science Review, 240.
See also here.
! Note figure 1: Major geochemical changes and the emergence of key biological groups over the past four billion years of Earth’s history.
! Figure 5: Major events in the evolution of eukaryotic life on Earth.

! P.G. Falkowski et al. (2005): The rise of oxygen over the past 205 million years and the evolution of large placental mammals. PDF file, Science, 309. Now provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
See also here (abstract). The overall increase in oxygen as a critical factor in the evolution, radiation, and subsequent increase in average size of placental mammals.

! P.G. Falkowski et al. (2000): The global carbon cycle: a test of our knowledge of earth as a system. PDF file, Science, 290.

M.A. Fedonkin (2003): The origin of the Metazoa in the light of the Proterozoic fossil record. In PDF, Paleontological Research, 7: 9-41. See also here.

! W.W. Fischer et al. (2016): How did life survive Earth's great oxygenation? In PDF, Current Opinion in Chemical Biology, 31: 166–178.

B.J. Fletcher et al. (2008): Atmospheric carbon dioxide linked with Mesozoic and early Cenozoic climate change. In PDF, Nat. Geosci., 1: 43-48.
See also here.

B.J. Fletcher et al. (2005): Fossil bryophytes as recorders of ancient CO2 levels: Experimental evidence and a Cretaceous case study. Free access, Global Biogeochemical Cycles.

Ben Fletcher, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield:
The role of stomata in the early evolution of land plants.
How the atmosphere affects plants.
These expired links are available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

P.J. Franks and D.L. Royer (2017): Comment on "Was atmospheric CO2 capped at 1000ppm over the past 300millionyears?" by McElwain JC et al. In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 472: 256–259. See also here.

P.J. Franks et al. (2014): New constraints on atmospheric CO2 concentration for the Phanerozoic. Open access, Geophys. Res. Lett., 41: 4685-4694.

! P.J. Franks et al. (2013): Sensitivity of plants to changing atmospheric CO2 concentration: from the geological past to the next century. In PDF, New Phytologist, 197.

P.J. Franks et al. (2012): Megacycles of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration correlate with fossil plant genome size. In PDF, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 367: 556-564.
See also here.

! J.M. Galloway and S. Lindström (2023): Wildfire in the geological record: Application of Quaternary methods to deep time studies. Open access, Evolving Earth, 1.
! Note figure 1: Summary figure of changes in atmospheric O2 [...] and important events in Earth’s history, climate state, selected extinction events.

! I.J. Glasspool and R.A. Gastaldo (2022): Silurian wildfire proxies and atmospheric oxygen, Open avccess, Geology.
! Note figure 3: Silurian–Devonian charcoal plotted against three common models of Paleozoic pO2 and back-calculated measurements.
"... The frequency of charcoal data from Silurian sequences indicates that fires were not rare but an established part of the terrestrial biome from at least the Wenlock onward. ..." Also worth checking out:
International Spotlight Shines on Colby Geologists (by Bob Keyes, July 7, 2022, Colby News).

! I.J. Glasspool and A.C. Scott 2010): Phanerozoic concentrations of atmospheric oxygen reconstructed from sedimentary charcoal. In PDF, Nature Geoscience, 3: 627-630.
See also here.
Additional information in: ScienceDaily and
! "... We estimate that pO2 was continuously above 26% during the Carboniferous and Permian periods, and that it declined abruptly around the time of the Permian–Triassic mass extinction. During the Triassic and Jurassic periods, pO2 fluctuated cyclically, with amplitudes up to 10% and a frequency of 20–30 million years. Atmospheric oxygen concentrations have declined steadily from the middle of the Cretaceous period to present-day values of about 21%. ..."

Y. Goddéris et al. (2023): What models tell us about the evolution of carbon sources and sinks over the Phanerozoic. Open access, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 51: 471-492.
Note figure 1: Overview of the feedback loop and causal links between the various component of the surficial Earth system.
"... In the present contribution, we review some crucial events in coupled Earth-climate-biosphere evolution over the past 540 million years
[...] Numerical models now allow us to address increasingly complex processes
[...] models of the carbon cycle in deep time coupled with increasingly complex ecological models are emerging ..."

Y. Goddéris et al. (2014): The role of palaeogeography in the Phanerozoic history of atmospheric CO2 and climate. In PDF, Earth-Science Reviews, 128: 122-138.

! J.B. Graham et al. (1995): Implications of the late Paleozoic oxygen pulse for physiology and evolution. In PDF.

W.A. Green (2010): The function of the aerenchyma in arborescent lycopsids: evidence of an unfamiliar metabolic strategy. PDF file, Proc. R. Soc., B, 277: 2257-2267.

! J.L. Grenfell et al. (2010): Co-evolution of atmospheres, life, and climate. PDF file, Astrobiology.

John Groves, Department of Earth Science, University of Northern Iowa: Oxygen & Evolution - A hot topic in paleobiology. Powerpoint presentation.

E. Hand (2017): Fossil leaves bear witness to ancient carbon dioxide levels. Abstract, Science, 355.

J.F. Harrison et al. (2010): Atmospheric oxygen level and the evolution of insect body size. In PDF, Proc. R. Soc., B, 277: 1937-1946.

K. Hantsoo et al. (2024): Trends in estuarine pyrite formation point to an alternative model for Paleozoic pyrite burial. Open access, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 374: 51-71.

M. Haworth et al. (2014): On the reconstruction of plant photosynthetic and stress physiology across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary. In PDF, Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences, 23: 321-329.

! W.W. Hay (2017): Toward understanding Cretaceous climate - An updated review. Science China Earth Sciences, 60: 5–19. See also here (abstract).

James D. Hays, The Climate System: Early Earth and the Evolution of the Atmosphere. Comparison of Earth with its neighbor planets.

! J.I. Hedges (1992): Global biogeochemical cycles: progress and problems. In PDF, Marine chemistry. See also here (abstract).

! J.B. Hedges (2004): A molecular timescale of eukaryote evolution and the rise of complex multicellular life. BMC evolutionary biology.

S.B. Hedges et al. (2001): Earth System Processes - Global Meeting (June 24-28, 2001) Edinburgh: A GENOMIC TIMESCALE FOR THE RISE IN OXYGEN AND ORIGIN OF EUKARYOTES. An abstract.

D. Hibbett et al. (2016): Climate, decay, and the death of the coal forests. In PDF, Current Biology 26.

! M.F. Hohmann-Marriott and R.E. Blankenship (2011): Evolution of Photosynthesis. In PDF, Annual Review of Plant Biology, 62: 515-548.
See also here.
Note figure 2: Evolution of life and photosynthesis in geological context, highlighting the emergence of groups of photosynthetic organisms.

! J. Huang et al. (2021): The oxygen cycle and a habitable Earth. In PDF, Science China Earth Sciences, 64: 511–528. See also here.
! Note figure 1: The status of the oxygen cycle in Earth system science and its relationship with other biogeochemical cycles.
! Figure 2: The evolution of atmospheric O2 and maximum organismal sizes through geological time.
! Figure 3: Sketch of the modern geologic oxygen cycle showing the principal sources and sinks.
! Figure 4: Reconstructed O2 content during the Phanerozoic Eon.
! Figure 5: Global oxygen cycle in the modern Earth system.

R.B. Huey and P:D. Ward (2005): Climbing a Triassic Mount Everest: Into thinner air. In PDF, JAMA-Journal of the American Medial Association, 294: 1761-1762.

T.T. Huynh and C.J. Poulsen (2005): Rising atmospheric CO2 as a possible trigger for the end-Triassic mass extinction. PDF file, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 217: 223-242.
See also here.

P.E. Jardine and B.H. Lomax (2021): A 23 m.y. record of low atmospheric CO2: COMMENT. Open access, Geology, 49: e523. See also:
Y. Cui et al. (2020): A 23 m.y. record of low atmospheric CO2. Open access, Geology, 48: 888–892.

! T.P. Jones and W.G. Chaloner (1991): Fossil charcoal, its recognition and palaeoatmospheric significance. Abstract.

! G.J. Jordan (2011): A critical framework for the assessment of biological palaeoproxies: predicting past climate and levels of atmospheric CO2 from fossil leaves. In PDF, New Phytologist.

JuJu Media, Science a GoGo: News, August 6, 200, Rocks Provide Clues To Origin Of Oxygen On Earth.

J.F. Kasting and J.L. Siefert (2002): Life and the evolution of Earth´s atmosphere. Abstract, Science.

J.F. Kasting (2001): Department of Geosciences, Pennsylvania State University: The Rise of Atmospheric Oxygen. PDF file, Science 293.
This expired link is now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J. Kasting (1993): Earth's early atmosphere. In PDF, Science, 259: 920-926.
See also here.

M. Alan Kazlev, Kheper website, Australia, see also Palaeos:
The Oxygen Atmosphere.
Website outdated. Link lead to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! P. Kenrick et al. (2012): A timeline for terrestrialization: consequences for the carbon cycle in the Palaeozoic. In PDF, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 367: 519-536.
Website saved by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! C. King (2022):
Exploring Geoscience across the globe. In PDF (42 MB), Excellent!
Provided by The International Geoscience Education Organisation (IGEO). Chapters that may be of interest:
Chapter 3.2 (starting on pdf-page 30): e.g. Relative dating, Absolute dating.
Chapter (starting on pdf-page 56): e.g. Sedimentary processes.
Chapter 4.3 (starting on pdf-page 115): e.g. Atmospheric change.
Chapter 4.4.1 (starting on pdf-page 122): e.g. Evolution.

! A.H. Knoll and M.A. Nowak (2017): The timetable of evolution. Free access, Science Advances, 3.
Note fig. 1: The evolutionary timetable, showing the course of evolution as inferred from fossils, environmental proxies, and high-resolution geochronology.

A.H. Knoll (2014): Paleobiological Perspectives on Early Eukaryotic Evolution. In PDF, see also here.

! A.H. Knoll and H.D. Holland, Harvard University: Oxygen and Proterozoic Evolution: An Update. From:
NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS, National Research Council, Washington, D.C.,1995: Effects of Past Global Change on Life.

W. Konrad et al. (2021): Leaf temperature and its dependence on atmospheric CO2 and leaf size. Open access, Geological Journal, 56.

A.J. Krause et al. (2018): Stepwise oxygenation of the Paleozoic atmosphere. Open access, Nature Communications, 9: 4081.

! T.A. Laakso (2017): A theory of atmospheric oxygen. In PDF, Doctoral dissertation, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences.
Conclusion on PDF page 190.

! A.D.B. Leakey and J.A. Lau (2012): Evolutionary context for understanding and manipulating plant responses to past, present and future atmospheric [CO2]. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 367: 613-629. See als here (in PDF).

T.M. Lenton et al. (2016): Earliest land plants created modern levels of atmospheric oxygen. Free access, PNAS, 113.

! T.M. Lenton and S.J. Daines (2016): Matworld - the biogeochemical effects of early life on land. In PDF, New Phytologist.

! T.M. Lenton (2002): Chapter 3, The coupled evolution of life and atmospheric oxygen. PDF file, from Lynn J. Rothschild and Adrian M. Lister (eds.), Evolution Planet Earth.

! T.M. Lenton (2001): The role of land plants, phosphorus weathering and fire in the rise and regulation of atmospheric oxygen. In PDF, Global Change Biology, 7: 613-629.

X.-M. Liu et al. (2021): A persistently low level of atmospheric oxygen in Earth’s middle age. Open access, Nature Communications, 12.
"... we report Ce/Ce* data in marine carbonate rocks through 3.5 billion years of Earth’s history, focusing in particular on the mid-Proterozoic Eon (i.e., 1.8 – 0.8 Ga). ..."
! Note fig. 3: The estimated partial pressure of atmospheric oxygen level pO2 (% PAL) during the Phanerozoic Eon compared to the results of other studies.

D.-W. et al. (2024): A synthesis of the Cretaceous wildfire record related to atmospheric oxygen levels? Open access, Journal of Palaeogeography, 13: 149-164.
"... In this study, we comprehensively synthesize a total of 271 published Cretaceous wildfire occurrences based on the by-products of burning, including fossil charcoal, pyrogenic inertinite (fossil charcoal in coal), and pyrogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Spatially, the dataset shows a distinctive distribution of reported wildfire evidence characterized by high concentration in the middle latitudinal areas of the Northern Hemisphere ..."

T.W. Lyons et al. (2021): Oxygenation, Life, and the Planetary System during Earth's Middle History: An Overview. Open access, Astrobiology, 21.
Note figure 1: Eukaryotic microfossil diversity through time.
Figure 3: Evolution of Earth’s atmospheric oxygen content through time.

! T.W. Lyons et al. (2014): The rise of oxygen in Earth’s early ocean and atmosphere. In PDF, Nature, 506. See also here (abstract and references).

P. Maffre et al. (2022): The complex response of continental silicate rock weathering to the colonization of the continents by vascular plants in the Devonian. In PDF,
See also here.
"... The fossil record shows that, by the end of the Devonian, vascular plants and forests were common and widespread [...]
we build a mathematical description of the coupled response of the physical erosion and chemical weathering on the continents, to the colonization by vascular plants over the course of the Devonian.

! W.F. Martin and J.F. Allen (2018): An algal greening of land. Free access, Cell, 174: 256-258. See also here.
Note figure 1: Streptophyte Algae and the Rise of Atmospheric Oxygen.

! W.J. Matthaeus et al. (2023): A systems approach to understanding how plants transformed Earth's environment in deep time. Free access, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 51: 551-580.
"... For hundreds of millions of years, plants have been a keystone in maintaining the status of Earth’s atmosphere, oceans, and climate
[...] Extinct plants have functioned differently across time, limiting our understanding of how processes on Earth interact to produce climate ..."
Note figure 1: Schematic of the trait-based whole-plant functional-strategy approach applied to late Paleozoic extinct plants.
Figure 3: Chart illustrating the Paleo-BGC modeling process (White et al., 2020) from inputs of fossil-inferred plant functional traits and environmental parameters to output.
Figure 5: Temporal distribution of late Paleozoic tropical biomes and atmospheric composition.
Figure 8: Schematic diagram presenting the information used to reconstruct and interpret time-appropriate vegetation-climate interactions.

D. Mauquoy et al. (2010): A protocol for plant macrofossil analysis of peat deposits. PDF file, Mires and Peat, 7.
Website outdated. The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J.C. McElwain (2018): Paleobotany and global change: Important lessons for species to biomes from vegetation responses to past global change, In PDF, Annual review of plant biology, 69: 761–787. See also here

! J.C. McElwain and M. Steinthorsdottir (2017): Paleoecology, ploidy, paleoatmospheric composition, and developmental biology: a review of the multiple uses of fossil stomata. Free access, Plant Physiology, 174: 650–664.
See also here.

J.C. McElwain et al. (2016): Assessing the role of atmospheric oxygen in plant evolution. Abstract, starting on PDF page 44.
Abstracts, XIV International Palynological Congress, X International Organisation of Palaeobotany Conference, Salvador, Brazil.

J.C. McElwain et al. (2016): Was atmospheric CO2 capped at 1000 ppm over the past 300 million years? In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 441: 653–658. See also here.

The University of Michigan: Global Change, Physical Processes:
Global Change 1 Fall 2011 Schedule . Go to:
! Evolution of the Atmosphere: Composition, Structure and Energy.

J.N. Milligan et al. (2022): Moderate to elevated atmospheric CO2 during the early Paleocene recorded by Platanites leaves of the San Juan Basin, New Mexico. Open access, Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology, 37.

! B.J.W. Mills et al. (2023): Evolution of Atmospheric O2 Through the Phanerozoic, Revisited. Free access, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 51: 253-276.
Note figure 1: The global oxygen cycle.
Figure 2: Long-term constraints on atmospheric O2 over Earth history.
Figure 3: Phanerozoic O2 estimates from geological and geochemical proxies.
! Figure 6: Toward a Phanerozoic O2 consensus curve.
! "... We conclude that O2 probably made up around 5–10% of the atmosphere during the Cambrian and rose in pulses to ~15–20% in the Devonian, reaching a further peak of greater than 25% in the Permo-Carboniferous before declining toward the present day ..."

! D.B. Mills et al. (2022): Eukaryogenesis and oxygen in Earth history. In PDF, Nature Ecology & Evolution, 6: 520–532. See also here.
Note especially: Fig. 3: Correlated fossil, molecular and geochemical timeline.
"... these results temporally, spatially and metabolically decouple the earliest stages of eukaryogenesis from the oxygen content of the surface ocean and atmosphere. Rather than reflecting the ancestral metabolic state, obligate aerobiosis in eukaryotes is most probably derived, having only become globally widespread over the past 1 billion years as atmospheric oxygen approached modern levels. ..."

B.J.W. Mills et al. (2021): Spatial continuous integration of Phanerozoic global biogeochemistry and climate. Free access, Gondwana Research, 100: 73–86.

! I.P. Montañez (2016): A Late Paleozoic climatewindow of opportunity. In PDF, PNAS, 113: 2334-2336. See also here.

! I.P. Montañez et al. (2016): Climate, pCO2 and terrestrial carbon cycle linkages during late Palaeozoic glacial–interglacial cycles. In PDF, Nature Geoscience, 9: 824–828.
See also here.
Note figure 2: Consensus pCO2 curves defined by LOESS analysis of combined pedogenic carbonate- and fossil plant-based CO2 estimates.

! J.L. Morris et al. (2015): Investigating Devonian trees as geo-engineers of past climates: linking palaeosols to palaeobotany and experimental geobiology. In PDF, Palaeontology, 58: 787-801. See also here.

! National Research Council (2011), The National Academies Press, Washington, DC: Understanding Earth's Deep Past: Lessons for Our Climate Future. 177 pages.
In Understanding Earth's Deep Past, the National Research Council reports that rocks and sediments that are millions of years old hold clues to how the Earth's future climate would respond in an environment with high levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases.
! See also here (PDF files available to download for free). You may download PDF files from NAP by logging in as a guest, providing only your email address.

M.P. Nelsen et al. (2016): Delayed fungal evolution did not cause the Paleozoic peak in coal production. In PDF, PNAS, 113. See also here (abstract).

Karl J. Niklas (2016): Plant Evolution: An Introduction to the History of Life. Book announcement.
Worth checking out: ! Introduction.
Note figure 0.1: A suggested reconstruction of the Carboniferous (359–300 Mya) flora.
! Figure 0.3: Estimates of the percent of present-day levels of atmospheric oxygen.
See also here (Google books).

W.R. Norris, Department of Natural Sciences, Western New Mexico University, Silver City, NM:
The Challenges of Life on Land. Lecture notes, powerpoint presentation. See also here (in PDF).

Claire O'Connell, The Irish Times, January 15, 2017: "Our climate is changing at a faster pace than ever before in geological history". Interview with J. Jennifer McElwain, University College Dublin, School of Biology and Environmental Science.

! S.L. Olson et al. (2018): Earth: Atmospheric Evolution of a Habitable Planet. PDF file, In: Deeg H., Belmonte J. (eds.) Handbook of Exoplanets. Springer. See also here.
Worth checking out: Figure 2, co-evolution of life and surface environments on Earth.

! Wolfgang Oschmann, Department of Geoscience, Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany: The Evolution of the Atmosphere of our Planet Earth. In PDF. About the the origin of earth and the early atmosphere, the role of biosphere and the carbon-cycle and the atmospheric evolution through time.

! Oxford Bibliographies.
Oxford Bibliographies offers exclusive, authoritative research guides. Combining the best features of an annotated bibliography and a high-level encyclopedia, this cutting-edge resource directs researchers to the best available scholarship across a wide variety of subjects. Go to:
The Earth’s Climate (by Justin Schoof).

A.A. Pavlov et al. (2000): Greenhouse warming by CH4 in the atmosphere of early Earth. In PDF, Journal of Geophysical Research, 105.
See here as well.

J.L. Payne et al. (2020): The evolution of complex life and the stabilization of the Earth system. Open access, Interface Focus, 10: 20190106.

A. Piombino (2016): The Heavy Links between Geological Events and Vascular Plants Evolution: A Brief Outline. In PDF, International Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 216.

! A.R.G. Plackett and J.C. Coates (2016): Life’s a beach – the colonization of the terrestrial environment. In PDF, New Phytologist, 212: 831–835. See also here.

The Plymouth State Meteorology Program Composition and Layers of the Atmosphere. A self guided tutorial. Go to: Evolution of the Atmosphere.

! W.M. Post et al. (1990): The global carbon cycle. In PDF, American Scientist.

J.S. Powers et al. (2009): Decomposition in tropical forests: a pan-tropical study of the effects of litter type, litter placement and mesofaunal exclusion across a precipitation gradient. Journal of Ecology, 97: 801-811.

S.H. Pritchard et al. (1999): Elevated CO2 and plant structure: a review. In PDF, Global Change Biology, 5: 807-837.
The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! P.K. Pufahl and E.E. Hiatt (2012): Oxygenation of the Earth's atmosphere–ocean system: a review of physical and chemical sedimentologic responses. In PDF, Marine and Petroleum Geology, 32: 1-20.
See also here.
Note table 1: Geochemical proxies used to understand the Great Oxidation Event.
Figure 1: Seawater chemistry and Earth events as related to the three stages of ocean-atmosphere oxygenation.

J.A. Raven et al. (2012): Algal evolution in relation to atmospheric CO2: carboxylases, carbon-concentrating mechanisms and carbon oxidation cycles. Free access, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 367: 493–507.

! C.T. Reinhard and N.J. Planavsky (2022): The History of Ocean Oxygenation. In PDF, Annual review of marine science, 14: 331-353. See also here.
"... we attempt to synthesize the major features of evolving ocean oxygenation on Earth through more than 3 billion years of planetary history. ..."

! G.J. Retallack (2002):&xnbsp; Carbon dioxide and climate over the past 300 Myr. In PDF, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond., A, 360: 659–673.
See also here.

! G.J. Retallack (2001): A 300-million-year record of atmospheric carbon dioxide from fossil plant cuticles. In PDF, Nature.
This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine. See also:
Supplementary Information for "A 300-million-year record of atmospheric carbon dioxide from fossil plant cuticles" Nature, V411, 287. They are measurements of stomatal index from fossil and living plants. Part 1 has reliable data, and Part 2 has data deemed statistically inadequate from a rarefaction analysis. Abbreviations include SI (stomatal index), Nf (number of fragments counted), Ns (number of stomates counted), Ne (number of epidermal cells counted), and Ma (millions of years ago).

Gunnar Ries, Mente et Malleo blog ( Der Sauerstoff in der Erdatmosphäre (in German).

E.A. Robinson et al. (2012): A meta-analytical review of the effects of elevated CO2 on plant-arthropod interactions highlights the importance of interacting environmental and biological variables. In PDF, New Phytologist, 194: 321-336. See also here (abstract).

J. Rogger et al. (2024): Speed of thermal adaptation of terrestrial vegetation alters Earth’s long-term climate. Open access, Science Advances, 10.
Note figure 1: Representation of long-term global carbon cycle.
Figure 3: Estimated carbon fluxes for different modes of vegetation adaptation to climatic changes.
"Earth’s long-term climate is driven by the cycling of carbon between geologic reservoirs and the atmosphere-ocean system
[...] we evaluate the importance of the continuous biological climate adaptation of vegetation as a regulation mechanism in the geologic carbon cycle since the establishment of forest ecosystems ..."

D.H. Rothman et al. (2014): Methanogenic burst in the end-Permian carbon cycle. In PDF, PNAS, 111.

D.L. Royer et al. (2007): Climate sensitivity constrained by CO2 concentrations over the past 420 million years. PDF file, Nature, 446.
See also here.

! D.L. Royer et al. (2004): CO2 as a primary driver of Phanerozoic climate. In PDF, GSA Today, 14: 1052-5173.
"... Here we review the geologic records of CO2 and glaciations and find that CO2 was low (<500 ppm) during periods of long-lived and widespread continental glaciations and high (>1000 ppm) during other, warmer periods.
Note figure 1: Details of CO2 proxy data set.
! Figure 2: CO2 and climate.

! D.L. Royer et al. (2001): Phanerozoic atmospheric CO2 change: evaluating geochemical and paleobiological approaches. In PDF, Earth-Science Reviews, 54: 349-392.
See also here.

D.L. Royer et al. (2001): Paleobotanical Evidence for Near Present-Day Levels of Atmospheric CO2 During Part of the Tertiary. In PDF, Science, 292.

R.F. Sage (2004): The evolution of C4 photosynthesis. Free access, New Phytologist, 161: 341–370.
"... C4 photosynthesis in the dicots originated in arid regions of low latitude, implicating combined effects of heat, drought and/or salinity as important conditions promoting C4 evolution. Low atmospheric CO2 is a significant contributing factor ..."

L. Santasalo (2013): The Jurassic extinction events and its relation to CO2 levels in the atmosphere: a case study on Early Jurassic fossil leaves. In PDF, Bachelor´s thesis, Department of Geology, Lund University, Sweden.

M.F. Schaller et al. (2015): A 30 Myr record of Late Triassic atmospheric pCO2 variation reflects a fundamental control of the carbon cycle by changes in continental weathering. In PDF, Geological Society of America Bulletin, 127.

! E. Schneebeli-Hermann et al. (2013): Evidence for atmospheric carbon injection during the end-Permian extinction. Abstract, Geology, 41: 579-582. See also here (in PDF).

! M. Schreiber et al. (2022): The greening ashore. Free access, Trends in Plant Science.
"... Two decisive endosymbiotic events, the emergence of eukaryotes followed by the further incorporation of a photosynthesizing cyanobacterium, laid the foundation for the development of plant life. ..." Geology, Evolution upset: Oxygen-making microbes came last, not first.

! C.R. Scotese et al. (2021): Phanerozoic paleotemperatures: The earth's changing climate during the last 540 million years. In PDF, Earth-Science Reviews, 215. See also here.
"... This study provides a comprehensive and quantitative estimate of how global temperatures have changed during the last 540 million years. It combines paleotemperature measurements determined from oxygen isotopes with broader insights obtained from the changing distribution of lithologic indicators of climate, such as coals, evaporites, calcretes, reefs, and bauxite deposits. ..."

Andrew C. Scott and Ian J. Glasspool (2006): The diversification of Paleozoic fire systems and fluctuations in atmospheric oxygen concentration. PDF file, PNAS, 103: 10861-10865. See also here.

A.L. Sessions et al. (2009): The continuing puzzle of the great oxidation event. PDF file, Current Biology, 19: R567-R574.

NJ. Shaviv and J. Veizer (2003): Celestial driver of Phanerozoic climate? In PDF, GSA Today, 13.
See also here.

N.D. Sheldon and N.J. Tabor (2013): Using paleosols to understand paleo-carbon burial. In PDF, New Frontiers in Paleopedology and Terrestrial Paleoclimatology, 104: 71-78.

! G.R. Shi and J.B. Waterhouse (2010): Late Palaeozoic global changes affecting high-latitude environments and biotas: an introduction. In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 298: 1-16.

Lee J. Siegel, Astrobiology Magazine: The Rise of Oxygen. See also here (PDF file).

M. Slodownik et al. (2021): Fossil seed fern Lepidopteris ottonis from Sweden records increasing CO2 concentration during the end-Triassic extinction event. Free access, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 564.

! F. Sønderholm and C.J. Bjerrum (2021): Minimum levels of atmospheric oxygen from fossil tree roots imply new plant-oxygen feedback. Open access, Geobiology,19: 250–260.
"... we consider archaeopterid fossil root systems, resembling those of modern mature conifers.
...The absence of large and deeply penetrating roots prior to the Middle Devonian may have been related to low atmospheric O2 pressures, but it is just as likely that the early evolution of roots reflects structural plant evolution rather than available soil O2. ..."

SpaceDaily: NASA Scientists Propose New Theory of Earth's Early Evolution. The rise of oxygen.

E.A. Sperling et al. (2022): Breathless through Time: Oxygen and Animals across Earth’s History. Free access, The Biological Bulletin, 243.
Note figure 1: The four broad stages of atmospheric oxygen and life through Earth history, with oxygen in log scale as percent of present atmospheric levels (% PAL).
Figure 5: Reconstructed marine animal biodiversity dynamics and atmospheric oxygen through the Phanerozoic.
Figure 7: The chronology of the worst mass extinction in Earth history.

M. Steinthorsdottir et al. (2021): The Miocene: The Future of the Past. Open access, Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology, 36: e2020PA004037.

M. Steinthorsdottir et al. (2021): Searching for a nearest living equivalent for Bennettitales: a promising extinct plant group for stomatal proxy reconstructions of Mesozoic pCO2. Open accesss, GFF, DOI: 10.1080/11035897.2021.1895304.

M. Steinthorsdottir and V. Vajda (2013): Early Jurassic (late Pliensbachian) CO2 concentrations based on stomatal analysis of fossil conifer leaves from eastern Australia. In PDF, Gondwana Research.

! M. Steinthorsdottir et al. (2011): Extremely elevated CO2 concentrations at the Triassic/Jurassic boundary. In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 308: 418-432.
See also here.
"... The final results indicate that pre-TJB (Rhaetian), the CO2 concentration was approximately 1000 ppm, that it started to rise steeply pre-boundary and had doubled to around 2000–2500 ppm at the TJB. The CO2 concentration then remained elevated for some time post-boundary, before returning to pre-TJB levels in the Hettangian. ..."

! Vince Stricherz, UW Today (University of Washington, Seattle, WA): Low oxygen likely made "Great Dying" worse, greatly delayed recovery.
About some results of Peter Ward and Raymond Huey, University of Washington.
"... nearby populations of the same species were cut off from each other because even low-altitude passes had insufficient oxygen to allow animals to cross from one valley to the next. ..."
"... it appears the greatly reduced oxygen actually created impassable barriers that affected the ability of animals to move and survive ..."

! R. Tappert et al. (2013): Stable carbon isotopes of C3 plant resins and ambers record changes in atmospheric oxygen since the Triassic. In PDF, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 121: 240-262.

V.J. Thannicka (2009): Oxygen in the evolution of complex life and the price we pay. Am. J. Respir. Cell Mol. Biol., 40: 507-510.

! H Tian et al. (2016): The terrestrial biosphere as a net source of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. In PDF, Nature. See also here (abstract).

Kenneth M. Towe, Tennille, GA: The Problematic Rise of Archean Oxygen. Science 22, February 2002: Vol. 295. no. 5559, p. 1419.

! D. Uhl et al. (2008): Permian and Triassic wildfires and atmospheric oxygen levels. PDF file, 1st WSEAS International Conference on Environmental and Geological Science and Enginering, Malta.

University World News (August 08, 2010): New technique estimates past oxygen levels.

G.J. Vermeij (2016): Gigantism and Its Implications for the History of Life. PLoS ONE, 11.

! M.W. Wallace et al. (2017): Oxygenation history of the Neoproterozoic to early Phanerozoic and the rise of land plants. In PDF, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 466: 12–19. See also here.

W.-q. Wang et al. (2023): Ecosystem responses of two Permian biocrises modulated by CO2 emission rates. Abstract, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 202.
"... we present a long-term uranium isotope (U) record using marine limestones covering the latest Early Permian through Middle to Late Permian. The U values show two episodes of low values in the middle Capitanian and late Changhsingian, indicating two periods of expansion of marine anoxia ..."

! L.M. Ward et al. (2016): Timescales of Oxygenation Following the Evolution of Oxygenic Photosynthesis. In PDF, Orig. Life Evol. Biosph.,46: 51-65.

P. Ward et al. (2006): Confirmation of Romer´s Gap as a low oxygen interval constraining the timing of initial arthropod and vertebrate terrestrialization. In PDF, PNAS, see also here.

! Helmut Weissert Geologie, ETH Zürich: Evolution der Biosphäre. Bilder aus der Erdgeschichte. PDF file, in German.
Now provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
! Oxygen evolution.
Earth's atmosphere.
Great Oxygenation Event.
Carbon cycle.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Great Oxygenation Event.
Große Sauerstoffkatastrophe (in German).

! J.P. Wilson (2020): Carboniferous plant physiology breaks the mold. Free access, New Phytologist.

! J.P. Wilson et al. (2017): Dynamic carboniferous tropical forests: new views of plant function and potential for physiological forcing of climate. Free access, New Phytologist, 215: 1333–1353.

A.M.E. Winguth (2016): Changes in productivity and oxygenation during the Permian-Triassic transition. Geology, 44: 783–784.

! V. Zimorski et al. (2019): Energy metabolism in anaerobic eukaryotes and Earth's late oxygenation. In PDF, Free Radical Biology and Medicine. See also here.
Note fig. 1: Summary of oxygen accumulation of earth history.

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