The Snowball Earth Hypothesis

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The Snowball Earth Hypothesis


Course number
Introduction 3
Synoptic Description of the Snowball Earth Hypothesis 3
Causes of the Snowball Earth 5
Occurrence of the Snowball Effect 6
Impacts of the Snowball Effect 8
Personal Suggestions 9
Conclusion 10
Works Cited 12


Massive changes in the earth’s climate are of particular note to environmental studies as they bear the potential to affect life greatly. Such geological and climatological changes are associated with the different ages that the earth has lived through, as well as the extinction and generation of various life forms. The Snowball Earth Hypothesis represents a concept explaining a possible climate and geological change in a past age in which the earth was entirely covered with ice. It explains contemporary observations about rock type distribution such as equatorial sedimentary deposits considered being from glacial origin (Cowen 50-51). This study analyzes the Hypothesis, providing a synoptic distribution, cause explanation, occurrence, and impact, before presenting a personal suggestion based on reflection on the evidence analyzed.

Synoptic Description of the Snowball Earth Hypothesis

The Snowball Earth Hypothesis focusses on the unparalleled climatic fluctuations that occurred during the Neoproterozoic time, positing that a global ice cover characterized this period. The hypothesis posits that the earth completely frozen, assuming a global ice cover, during the end of the Proterozoic era (Stern, Avigad, Miller, and Beyth 3). According to the proponents of the Snowball Earth, the earth was ice-covered from the poles to the equator during an extreme cooling event estimated at 580 million years ago. The Snowball Earth concept was put forward to explain observations that late Neoproterozoic ice sheets…...

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