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Mass extinctions

wading
I wrote here about mass extinctions recently, and I think I wasn't clear in the discussion that followed in the comments. We are currently involved in the sixth mass extinction event in the history of life on earth. What makes it different from the others?

Of course, you might say that if Earth has recovered from five waves of species loss in the prehistoric past, what’s the big deal this time round? Well, it is being driven by a single species, while the other five were triggered by climatic upheavals. And it’s up to that single species — us — to decide the fate of the biosphere for the next five million years, which is the minimum time it takes to replace species after a mass extinction.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_1665204,00120003.htm

I know as an environmentalist I'm among the doomsayers, but I find the figure of 5 million years to be encouraging, if optimistic.

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dandelion
urbpan
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