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Cyanobacteria in rock

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OU Geoscientists Document the Role of Atmospheric Dust on Marine Ecosystems 300 Million Years Ago

Dust plays a crucial role in the life and health of our planet. In our modern world, dust-borne nutrients traveling in great dust storms from the Saharan Desert fertilize the soil in the Amazon Rainforest and feed photosynthetic organisms like algae in the Atlantic Ocean. In turn, it is those organisms that breathe in carbon dioxide and expel oxygen.

Mehrdad Sardar Abadi, a researcher in the Mewbourne College of Earth and Energy School of Geosciences and School director Lynn Soreghan, led a study with researchers from Florida State University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Hampton University and the College of Charleston, to understand the role of dust on the Earth’s atmosphere in deep time – 300 million years ago. 

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Sarah Warren
Mewbourne College of Earth and Energy

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