DOI: 10.2138/gselements.19.5.289 ISSN: 1811-5217

Impacts of Large-scale Magmatism on Land Plant Ecosystems

Jennifer M. Galloway, Sofie Lindström
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

Terrestrial ecosystems are integral components of global carbon budgets and modulators of Earth’s climate. Emplacement of large igneous provinces (LIPs) is implicated in almost every mass extinction and smaller biotic crises in Earth’s history, but the effects of these and other large-scale magmatic events on terrestrial ecosystems are poorly understood. Palynology, the study of fossilized pollen and spores, offer a means to robustly reconstruct the types and abundance of plants growing on the landscape and their response to Earth crises, permitting predictions of the response of terrestrial vegetation to future perturbations. We review existing palynological literature to explore the direct and cumulative impacts of large-scale magmatism, such as LIP-forming events, on terrestrial vegetation composition and dynamics over geological time.

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