Evolution and humans: plate tectonic relationships (Evolution)

by dhw, Friday, December 30, 2016, 13:12 (712 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: There is a current theory that plate tectonic alterations of East Africa in the Rift Valley pushed human evolution:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-climate-change-and-plate-tectonics-shape...

QUOTES: "We have now started to put together a coherent picture of how the changing East African landscape has driven human evolution over the last ten million years. The region has altered beyond all recognition, from flat and forested to one filled with spectacular, two-mile-high mountains, savannahs and tropical forests. By priming the land to form lake basins that were sensitive to small changes in rainfall, extreme climate pulses of alternately arid and wet period occurred and had a profound effect on all the animals living in East Africa. The powerful forces of plate tectonics and climate variability ultimately led to our hominid ancestors' development and their dispersal from Africa, to the Caucasus, the Fertile Crescent, and ultimately the rest of the world."

David’s comment: A fascinating story. Certainly the climatic changes acted as a drive to change the existing ape species, but as I've noted before, but the changes were not required to happen, as shown by the currently existing apes and monkeys demonstrate. The Earth is a very special planet with its changing plate tectonics creating a climate that provides for evolving life.

Thank you for this brilliant article! I can’t fault the logic. As for your own logic, we have both noted repeatedly that NO changes were “required to happen” since bacteria have survived perfectly well. The article simply offers an intriguingly convincing explanation as to how it DID happen. But yes, the Earth is very special.


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